Euro 2020

Leipzig to the last finalist, Tottenham, for its first 8th UEFA Champions League – Euro 2020

by: Adam Smith


Tottenham Hotspur are preparing for their third consecutive uefa Champions League round of 16 appearance and a first-time match against Leipzig, who are making their debut at this stage of the competition.

The Spurs lost in the final last season and validated their return to the knockout phase by finishing second in Group B. Leipzig, meanwhile, are playing in their second UEFA Champions League season and, unlike their debut in 2017/18, the Germans extended their knockout campaign by postponing Group G.

Leipzig are one of two teams making their debuts in the 8th final set in 2019/20, alongside Atalanta.

Spurs finished six points clear in second place in Group B despite two losses to Bayern Munich, who won the group with the most points. Tottenham have taken just one point in their first two matches, a 2-2 draw at The Olympiacos before a 7-2 rout at home to Bayern (the first time they have scored seven home goals in their 137-year history) but they recovered with a 5-0 home win over the Red Star, their biggest uefa Champions League success.

Spurs had won only one of their last six UEFA Champions League matches (1 n., 4 d.) before the third day, but then recorded three straight wins before losing to Bayern.

This is only Spurs’ fourth appearance in the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 (2 qualifiers, 1 elimination). In 2010/11, they won 1-0 on the AC Milan pitch and on all two matches; two seasons ago they drew 2-2 with Juventus in the first leg but were eliminated after a 2-1 home defeat.

The victory over Dortmund at this stage last season brings Spurs’ record in home-and-away clashes against German clubs to five qualifiers and 3 eliminations.

The Lilywhites had won four consecutive games against German clubs, both at home and away, all against Dortmund, before losing at home to Bayern in Round 2.

Leipzig finished top of Group G by three lengths, collecting seven of their 11 points on the road thanks to successes at Benfica (2-1) and on the Zenit pitch (2-0) before giving up a two-goal advantage to bring back a 2-2 draw from Lyon in Round 6. At home, the Germans bounced back from a 2-0 loss to the future second-placed side of the group, Lyon, beating Zenit 2-1 and conceding the 2-2 draw against Benfica on the penultimate day to seal their qualification.

Leipzig have won five of their 12 UEFA Champions League matches (3 n. and 4 d.)

Third in the Bundesliga last season and runners-up in the German Cup, Leipzig is playing their third European campaign here, with the match against Tottenham being their 31st on the continent. In 2017/18, Leipzig became the first club to discover Europe in the UEFA Champions League group stage, finishing third in a group that included Besikta, Porto and Monaco with seven points. The Germans were then eliminated in the uefa Europa League quarter-finals by Marseille.

Two years ago, Leipzig lost to Besikta (0-2) and Porto (1-3) but won 4-1 in Monaco to clinch their first European away win.

Before this season, Leipzig had won only three times in 12 European trips (4 n. and 5 d.).

Do we know each other?
Ethan Ampadu (Leipzig) is on loan from Chelsea.

Played in Germany:
Heung-Min Son (Hamburg 2008-13, Bayer Leverkusen 2013-15)

Also played in England:
Ademola Lookman (Charlton 2013-17, Everton 2017-19)

Teammates in selection:
Ben Davies and Ethan Ampadu (Wales)

Have evolved together:
Christopher Nkunku and Serge Aurier (Paris Saint-Germain 2015-17)
Christopher Nkunku and Lucas Moura (Paris Saint-Germain 2015-18)
Dayot Upamecano, Christopher Nkunku and Tanguy Ndombélé (France M21)

Harry Kane scored in England’s 5-0 win over Patrik Schick’s Czech Republic in the UEFA EURO 2020 qualifiers on 22 March 2019.