Tottenham completed a dramatic comeback to beat Ajax on the away goals rule, with Lucas Moura scoring in the final minute to book their place in the UEFA Champions League final.
The match started on the best possible note for the hosts, as Matthijs de Ligt headed in the opener just five minutes in, with Ajax seemingly taking a big step towards qualifying for the Champions League final. Thereafter, the game became an end-to-end affair, with Tottenham not giving up their chase for a place in next month’s finale.
Spurs though, had only themselves to blame for not clawing their way back in the contest, thanks to some poor finishing. And, Ajax punished their visitors with a fantastic goal at the end of a counter-attacking move, with Hakim Ziyech producing a fine finish that beat Hugo Lloris all ends up.
With the hopes of comeback fading as the two teams went into half-time, Tottenham needed a miracle to somehow find their way back into the tie. And, they produced just that, as 15 minutes post the interval, the game was back on level terms, with the aggregate scoreline reading 3-2 thanks to Lucas Moura.
The Brazilian was first put through on goal by Dele Alli, as he curled his effort around Andre Onana. Four minutes later, Moura doubled his and Tottenham’s tally, producing a fine left-footed finish following some clever footwork.
The game remained an end-to-end thereafter, with a rattled Ajax determined to create some headway between them and Mauricio Pochettino’s men. But, it was Tottenham who had the last laugh, with practically the final kick of the game, as Lucas Moura completed his hat-trick with a perfectly timed shot.
The goal sent the entire Tottenham side into raptures, kicking off wild celebrations. Spurs will now face Liverpool in the final, which will be played in Madrid next month, following the Reds’ own comeback tale on Tuesday. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over both sets of players after what was a captivating contest.
Andre Onana: 6/10
Made a couple of top-class saves but could have done better for two of the three goals scored by Lucas Moura, if not for iffy positioning.
Noussair Mazraoui: 6/10
A weak link in the Ajax defence, Mazraoui struggled against the pace of Son Heung-min and trickery of Dele Alli. Not a threat in the final third either.
Matthijs de Ligt: 7/10
The Ajax captain scored another important goal and defended bravely against the threat of the relentless waves of Tottenham attacks. Not one of the culprits for the defeat.
Daley Blind: 6/10
Tale of two halves for Blind, who was an assured presence at the back in the first half but struggled to deal with the physical threat of Fernando Llorente in the second.
Nicolas Tagliafico: 6/10
Underwhelming at the back, the rampaging Lucas Moura had his number. Contributed a great deal while moving forward, and was key in build-up plays.
Lasse Schone: 5/10
Not quite at his best, especially in his defensive duties, with the Dane being caught for pace one too many times. One of those at fault for the second Tottenham goal.
Frenkie de Jong: 6/10
In his elements in the first half, de Jong pulled the strings ever so effortlessly in the first half, but faded remarkably post the break, when Tottenham took charge.
Hakim Ziyech: 8/10
The superstar for Ajax on Wednesday, Ziyech was a constant threat, even when Spurs dominated the game. Peach of a finish for his goal, but could have had more.
Donny van de Beek: 6/10
Not as big a threat as he was in the first leg, van de Beek’s nippy presence in the final third was sorely missed.
Dusan Tadic: 7/10
A player reformed, Tadic stretched the Tottenham defence beautifully and set up the goal for Ziyech. On another could have scored a goal or two himself.
Kasper Dolberg: 5/10
A late selection due to David Neres’ injury in training, Dolberg was not quite at the same wavelength as the rest of his teammates and was easily dealt with.
Joel Veltman: 5/10
On for Schone, Veltman failed to provide the assured presence at the back that Ajax needed to nip Spurs’ resurgence.
Daley Sinkgraven: 5/10
Made little impact after replacing Dolberg.
Lisandro Magallan: N/A
Barely had any time to influence the game.
Hugo Lloris: 6/10
Not at fault for either goal, Lloris made two vital saves without which Tottenham would never have found their way back into the tie.
Kieran Trippier: 5/10
A game to forget for Trippier, who failed to mark de Ligt for Ajax’s opener before enduring a nervy outing against the tricky Dusan Tadic. Not a huge threat on counters.
Toby Alderweireld: 6/10
A difficult first half saw Alderweireld struggle to deal with the pace of the Ajax attacks, but the Belgian was colossal post the interval.
Jan Vertonghen: 7/10
Back already after a horrific concussion, Vertonghen was solid for the most part on the night, barely troubled by any individual. Should have scored with a late effort before Lucas Moura’s eventual winner.
Danny Rose: 7/10
Did not have a great deal to do defensively, with Ziyech drifting inward. A big presence in the final third with his deliveries.
Moussa Sissoko: 7/10
A brave and determined showing from Sissoko, who took it upon himself to drive Tottenham forward at every given opportunity. A key factor in the win.
Victor Wanyama: 5/10
Like last week, Wanyama was run ragged by the Ajax midfielders and was taken off at half-time this time, in what was an inspired substitution.
Christian Eriksen: 7/10
After a slow start on his return to his former club, Eriksen pulled the strings ever so well in the second half to help Spurs in their stirring comeback.
Dele Alli: 8/10
Might not have scored, but influenced the game massively with his clever movement and smart passing. Set up the first goal for Lucas Moura and then the winner.
Lucas Moura: 10/10
Lucas Moura put himself in some elite company last night. pic.twitter.com/bBVcspew24
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 9, 2019
The match winner. Lucas Moura produced three splendid finishes, making for great goals in their own right, while also showing some neat footwork. Billed a “superhero” by Mauricio Pochettino.
Son Heung-min: 6/10
Son looked like a man on a mission on Wednesday, but it was one of those days when nothing he tried came off.
Fernando Llorente: 7/10
The catalyst in the turnaround, Llorente provided an imposing presence in and around the Ajax box, throwing the opposition defenders off their game massively.
Erik Lamela: N/A
A late introduction, Lamela did not make much of an impact.
Ben Davies: N/A
A pair of fresh legs to steady things at the back.