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Pochettino dreams of Champions League quarter-final in new stadium

Pochettino dreams of Champions League quarter-final in new stadium
© Reuters
Spurs are through to the last eight for the first time since 2011.

Mauricio Pochettino hailed Tottenham’s “fantastic achievement” in getting to the Champions League quarter-finals – and hopes to play the next round in their new stadium.

Spurs finished the job against Borussia Dortmund as Harry Kane’s second-half goal, which saw him become the club’s leading scorer in European football with 24, sealed a 4-0 aggregate win in the last-16 tie.

They move through to the last eight for the first time since 2011 and will hope to be in their new 62,000-seater home by the time the tie comes around in April.

That could be dependent on whether their likely first game there against Brighton on April 7 is postponed because of the FA Cup or they are drawn at home in the first leg, scheduled to be on April 9 or 10.

Either way Pochettino, who inadvertently hinted he will be handed a touchline ban on Wednesday for his altercation with Mike Dean at Burnley, is already dreaming of hearing the Champions League anthem in their new home.

“I expect to play at the new stadium,” he said. “I was talking with Daniel (Levy, chairman) and he was very positive, I hope and I wish we can play in our new stadium.

“We were sitting and listening to the Champions League song and we were talking with Jesus (Perez, assistant manager) saying it will be amazing to be in the new stadium listening to that song before the game.

“Now we are in the quarter-final I hope we can finish and we can listen to the song there.”

The hard yards of their progression were done with their 3-0 first leg at Wembley three weeks ago, but they also came through a testing opening 45 minutes at Signal Iduna Park where Dortmund laid siege to their goal.

Hugo Lloris pulled off several saves on his way to a 100th clean sheet for the club, allowing Kane’s clinical finish early in the second half to kill the tie off.

“I feel very proud,” Pochettino added. “I am more than happy first of all for our players. They deserved it, the effort was brilliant.

“Playing with a massive disadvantage with the first leg at Wembley and tonight I think it was a great effort and I want to congratulate my players.

“Then of course very proud for our fans and the club. I think it’s a fantastic season, a season that we are going to remember.

“Of course it is only the quarter-finals but it’s a fantastic achievement for the team.”

Pochettino’s pre-match rhetoric was how Spurs were at a disadvantage due to having less time to prepare for both legs than Dortmund and he said the authorities in England needed to offer more help.

He again went on the attack towards the Football Association, hinting that he is expecting a touchline ban as punishment for his improper conduct charge after he misinterpreted a question.

“You are going to see tomorrow why I am not going to talk,” he said. “I am very disappointed, I don’t think that is going to change but I don’t care, we are going to be strong.

“If are not going to receive a help from our football people in our country only I can laugh. You are going to see tomorrow why I am not so happy with the people.”

Dortmund boss Lucien Favre knew the damage was done at Wembley and also rued his side’s failure to break the deadlock in a dominant first half.

Lucien Favre shouts instructions from the touchline
Lucien Favre shouts instructions from the touchline (Martin Meissner/AP)

“I think we played a very good first half, with nearly six chances on goal, but we did not score,” he said.

“We lost 1-0 in the end but we didn’t lose the tie at home today. We could have been ahead at half-time but it didn’t happen, it was just impossible to achieve.”

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