Spurs book place in Champions League quarter-finals
Harry Kane rewrote the history books as Tottenham finished off Borussia Dortmund to reach the Champions League quarter-finals.
The England striker’s second-half goal saw him become Spurs’ leading scorer in European competitions with 24, helping his side win 1-0 away to the Bundesliga leaders and seal a 4-0 aggregate success in the last-16 tie.
Kane’s 14th goal in 17 Champions League appearances again proved he is the man for the occasion.
Spurs came into the game with a 3-0 advantage from the first leg, but they were forced to survive a first-half barrage at Signal Iduna Park, before Kane’s goal early after the restart took the pressure off and ensured a safe passage to the last eight.
Progression represents progress for Mauricio Pochettino’s side, who went out to Juventus at this stage last season.
It means they are in their first Champions League quarter-final since Harry Redknapp took them there in 2011.
However, it was not an entirely comfortable evening for Spurs – the outcome might have been different had Dortmund taken one of 11 first-half chances.
With such a rescue mission to perform, the hosts were always going to start strongly and they had their visitors on the rack early.
Jan Vertonghen, the first leg hero at Wembley three weeks ago with a goal and an assist, again came up trumps for his side with a brilliant goal-saving tackle on Marco Reus after the Dortmund skipper capitalised on a Davinson Sanchez error.
Spurs were not helping themselves as they were sloppy in possession and the wave of early pressure continued as Reus’ had a deflected effort that Hugo Lloris grabbed at the second attempt before Mario Gotze’s shot from the edge of the area was blocked by Christian Eriksen.
The Premier League side will have taken comfort from the fact that Dortmund’s desperation to score might leave holes at the back which they could exploit – and that happened on the half-hour.
It opened up for Eriksen in the middle of the park and he slid Son through on goal.
The South Korean has a brilliant scoring record against Dortmund and would have expected to score but he stubbed his shot wide under pressure from defenders.
Attacks like that were a rarity, though, and it was only down to some heroic goalkeeping from Lloris that Spurs were able to survive a Dortmund barrage.
First the France captain kept out Julian Weigl’s header, with Ben Davies brilliantly blocking the rebound from the same player, before Lloris again produced a fine flying save to keep out Raphael Guerriero’s curling effort, with all three chances coming in the space of a minute.
Lloris, who has produced some costly errors in the Champions League this term, then had to save more routinely from Jadon Sancho and Paco Alcacer as Pochettino’s side somehow got to half-time with their 3-0 aggregate lead intact.
With the advantage of kicking towards their famous ‘Yellow Wall’, Dortmund will have been fancying more of the same.
But, just as they did at Wembley in the first leg, they suffered a damaging start to the second half as Kane put the tie beyond reach.
The man who so often scores for Tottenham when they need him to, showcased his clinical finishing in the 49th minute.
After getting back onside when a move broke down, he found himself in space and when Moussa Sissoko slid the ball through there was little doubt about the end result as Kane fired into the top corner.
That ended any doubts about the outcome and Dortmund were unable to recreate the intensity and pressure they had produced before the interval.
Spurs could have had a bigger winning margin had they used the ball better on the counter-attack, but they were not troubled in the same manner at the other end.
Indeed, Lloris was not forced into another meaningful save until the 90th minute when he kept out Alcacer’s low shot with his legs, ensuring Dortmund were stopped from scoring in front of their own fans for just the second time this season.