Tottenham Hotspur v Borussia Dortmund


Jadon Sancho (centre) has produced nine assists in the Bundesliga this season

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Mauricio Pochettino says he is not surprised by the emergence of Borussia Dortmund’s English winger Jadon Sancho as Spurs prepare to take on the German side in the Champions League.

The 18-year-old, who joined from Manchester City in 2017, has produced eight goals and 10 assists for the Bundesliga leaders this season.

“We knew very well that he was capable of doing what he’s doing now,” Pochettino said. “We were talking in the last few years that he was a massive prospect.”

Sancho is expected to be named in the starting XI after Dortmund captain Marco Reus was ruled out of the last-16 first leg match with a thigh injury.

Pochettino added: “Of course he is showing now in Germany that he can cope with the pressure to play in the Bundesliga or in the Champions League. And no, it doesn’t surprise me. His talent is there and he’s a very talented player.”

The teenager, whose three goals helped England win the Under-17 World Cup in 2017, won his first senior cap for England against Croatia last October.

‘We can do it this year,’ says Vertonghen

Defender Jan Vertonghen is confident Tottenham can reach the last eight for the first time since 2011.

“We can beat anyone,” said the Belgian, who is likely to play in the left-back position and mark Sancho.

“We have shown that last year. Over two games we were the better team against Real Madrid (four points from two group games) who were the eventual winners of the trophy.

“That is why it was a shame we could not do better last year because we felt we should have done better. That is why everyone has the feeling we can do it this year.”


Tottenham duo Eric Dier (virus) and Erik Lamela (back) both returned to training with the squad on Tuesday for the first leg of their last-16 match. Neither were available for Sunday’s 3-1 win over Leicester.

Argentine Pochettino confirmed left-back Danny Rose’s shin injury means he is a doubt for Wednesday’s contest.

Striker Harry Kane (ankle) and midfielders Dele Alli (hamstring) and Ben Davies (groin) remain sidelined.

Spurs have a 55% chance of reaching the last eight

Simon Gleave, head of sports analysis at Gracenote, said: “Tottenham are rated the ninth best team in Europe by the Euro Club Index