Published: Wed, September 13, 2017
Sports | By Mabel Barber

Dortmund Game 'So Important', Says Pochettino

Dortmund Game 'So Important', Says Pochettino

Tottenham's Champions League campaign gets underway against Borussia Dortmund at Wembley on Wednesday and on paper, the match holds the key to their hopes of qualification for the knockout rounds.

Tottenham manager, Mauricio Pochettino says his side are not looking to let Real Madrid finish top of Group H, as that is the spot the club is aiming for.

Frustrated by a series of miserable experiences at Wembley, Tottenham will be desperate to finally vanquish the ghosts that haunt them at the national stadium. In theory it should be Real Madrid first and the others trying for second, but football is not about theory.

"It will be tough because Dortmund is a great, great team but in our mind our mentality is to try to win and be aggressive from the first ball".

Last season Tottenham finished third in their group after a slow start to make a swift exit into the Europa League, with Monaco and Bayer Leverkusen finishing above them as their Wembley troubles stunted any progression.

And just as a defeat would be hugely damaging, a win would not only be a spectacular way to lift the Wembley curse, it would set up Spurs to announce themselves as a force in Europe, just as they have done in the Premier League. The Premier League is the principal competition for every player that plays in the Premier League.

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"The first game is always important", he told a pre-match news conference.

"We've been waiting for the Champions League to start again to show everybody what we can do at this level".

Spurs must improve at their temporary home, but will be without playmaker Dele Alli after his red card against Gent last season, with his suspension carrying over into his next European encounter.

He said: "Last year we got off to a bad start, which didn't help us". We've got to perform on the big stage.

Burnley midfielder Joey Barton has predicted Tottenham Hotspur will struggle to compete in the Champions League as a direct result of their supposed inability to play at Wembley.

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