No miracle finish for Tottenham after Moussa Sissoko’s nightmare start | David Hytner

All Mauricio Pochettino’s planning went awry after just 22 seconds. Liverpool took full advantage

A tremendous madness: Mauricio Pochettino’s soundbite to describe Tottenham’s passage to their first Champions League final was a decent attempt to sum it all up. There were the late goals that kept them alive in the second half of the group-phase campaign, not to mention the one from Lucas Moura that crowned the epic comeback in the semi-final at Ajax. And what about the VAR craziness in the quarter-final at Manchester City?

The well ran dry against a Liverpool team that showed control and a streetwise edge and it felt as though Pochettino’s comment could be best applied to the moment that shaped the match after 22 seconds. It was ludicrously risky of Moussa Sissoko to have his arm raised high as Sadio Mané shaped to cross and, although the initial contact appeared to be with the Spurs midfielder’s armpit, the luck was against him when the ball dribbled down his limb. Mohamed Salah’s penalty gave Liverpool something to protect – a task that a defence as suffocating as theirs embraced with relish.

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