Tottenham Hotspur have ended their Wembley Stadium woes with an impressive 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund in the UEFA Champions League.
Spurs had only won one in their last eleven matches at the 90,000 seater, but a goal from Son Heung-Min had them in front after four minutes.
Andriy Yarmolenko did pull Dortmund level with a superb strike, but a goal from Harry Kane either side of half-time got Spurs a win from their opening group game despite Jan Vertonghen’s late red card.
It was an electric atmosphere inside the stadium thanks to the very loud Dortmund following and it was Tottenham who made an electric start by taking the lead inside four minutes. Kane spread the ball wide for Son on the counter attack and the South Korea international skipped away from Sokratis before blasting past Roman Burki at the near post. It was a terrific goal from an impossibly tight angle, but the Dortmund goalkeeper will be disappointed to be beaten so easily.
The goal sparked an incredible response from the German side as they monopolised possession and were camped inside the Tottenham half. That made it no surprise when they levelled the score in the eleventh minute.
Andriy Yarmolenko was making his first start for the club after signing in the summer transfer window and the winger pulled off a real piece of beauty to make it 1-1. He linked up with Shinji Kagawa nicely on the edge of the box and delivered a superb curling shot into the top corner, with Hugo Lloris helpless.
It was a top class goal that Dortmund deserved, but they were hit with a sucker punch as Spurs took the lead for a second time against the run of play.
Dortmund’s defending was abysmal again as Kane bulldozed his way past Nuri Sahin and unleashed a powerful left-footed shot that flew past Burki at the near post again. It was a carbon copy of Spurs’ first goal and questions were starting to be asked of the Dortmund goalkeeper. For Kane, it is his third goal in four UEFA Champions League appearances.
The first half continued the same pattern of play with Dortmund dominating the ball and Tottenham ready to counter quickly. However, some great last-ditch defending and sloppy final ball passes meant the Bundesliga leaders failed to test Lloris as the half-time whistle blew.
In the second half, Tottenham took advantage of some dreadful Dortmund defensive positioning to make two great opportunities in the space of a minute. Kane was released by Christian Eriksen’s pass, but the England international blasted well over from a good position while just after, Son curled over following a nice Cruyff turn on the edge of the box.
The North London side were gifted a piece of luck when Dortmund had a goal wrongfully disallowed for offside. Sahin’s cross was expertly rifled into the top corner by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but the striker was disappointed to see the offside flag raised despite being in an onside position when the pass was played.
It got worse for Dortmund on the hour mark as Kane grabbed a second to add further distance between the two teams. The striker did well to pull away from Sokratis and collect Eriksen’s short pass, but the finish across the goal into the bottom corner was a testament to the striking ability of Tottenham’s main marksmen. It was a deflating blow for Dortmund and seemed to quiet the German fans for the first time in the game.
Tottenham were starting to run the show with influential playmaker Eriksen starting to get on the ball more. The Dane picked out Ben Davies with an incredible cross-field pass, but the wing-back saw his low drive pushed away by Burki’s diving parry. Up the other end, Mario Gotze’s corner was flicked on Sokratis and volleyed by the arriving Aubameyang, but Lloris made a good save to keep it out with his legs.
There was a final chance for Kane to grab a hat-trick as Dortmund’s leaky defence continued to open up. Eriksen’s deft header allowed last season’s Premier League top scorer to strike at goal with his left foot, but he failed to get a clean connection and the ball bobbled wide from 20 yards.
Spurs were dealt a blow at the final whistle as Vertonghen was harshly sent off for an aerial tussle, but the win proved to be a perfect start for Spurs and the possibility of knock-out qualification seems clearer with the three points.