Hugo Lloris admitted that Tottenham made Antonio Conte suffer before they advanced into the Champions League last 16. With the manager in the stands following his red card against Sporting last week, Spurs were 1-0 down to Marseille at half-time and flirting with disaster. But they turned it around in the second half, Clément Lenglet’s equaliser giving them a foothold in the next round before Pierre-Emile Højbjerg’s stoppage-time winner made sure they finished top of the group.
“Without our coach … it was probably even more difficult for him in the stand,” Lloris said. “It’s a great winning team – that’s the most important thing. It was a tough night, a great battle and even a more psychological battle because we could feel there was a team playing without fear.
“In the second half we faced a team that had the fear to lose, because they were 1-0 up and one goal could stop them going through. Also I believe that when we had to face difficulties, we showed great personality. It’s a great result.”
It was Lenglet’s first goal for Spurs after his summer loan move from Barcelona. “We didn’t play well in the first half maybe because we didn’t know if we had to attack or defend and maybe it was not good to play this type of first half,” he said.
“After we speak in the locker room and tell what we have to tell. We started the second half with more power and personality to go to score and we played a very, very good second half.”
Cristian Stellini, who took the team in Conte’s absence, was asked about Son Heung-min’s fitness after the forward had to be withdrawn following a shuddering collision with Chancel Mbemba, the Marseille goalscorer.
Asked whether Son had been concussed, Stellini said: “In this moment, we don’t know. We have to wait for a medical assessment and we have to wait until tomorrow. Sonny feels better now. I saw him in the dressing room, he celebrated with us. So we wait for tomorrow.”