Home » Champ League, Latest » Match Report: FC Twente 3 Tottenham Hotspur 3

When Tottenham’s name goes into the hat for the knock-out draw of the Champions League, it should carry the words ‘The Entertainers’. Their eight games in the competition have produced 38 goals, with Spurs averaging three per game in winning Group A.

They offered their own brand of Dutch courage in Enschede, leading twice before accepting the draw which confirms them as winners ahead of holders Inter Milan, who lost in Germany against Werder Bremen.

Jermain Defoe, without a goal since August following a long injury lay-off, scored twice following a remarkable early own goal, from Peter Wisgerhof. Danny Landzaat’s penalty restored parity but Defoe regained the lead. Roberto Rosales levelled again, Defoe scored his second and then Nacer Chadli claimed the game’s sixth goal.

Ahead of the crucial visit of Chelsea in the Premier League on Sunday, Redknapp rested Alan Hutton, Aaron Lennon and Luka Modric – who had been suffering from ‘flu – while handing rare starts to Vedran Corluka and Niko Kranjcar.

Tom Huddlestone was missing again and, perhaps for his own good. In the home tie in September, he caught Twente’s Marc Janko in the chin with his elbow and the Dutch were furious that he escaped punishment either from the referee or from Uefa, who studied the incident.

Tottenham were also without a Dutchman, Rafael van der Vaart, along with Younes Kaboul but Michael Dawson was present again on the bench following three months out with a knee injury.

Spurs went into the game searching for their first away win in the Champions League or its predecessor, the European Cup, since the 1961-62 campaign when they won 3-1 in Holland, beating PSV Eindhoven. In seven subsequent games, including three this season, five had ended in defeat.

Twente, in their 100th European tie, were defending an impressive home record which had brought just one previous defeat at home in a year. With hopes of qualifying for the knockout stages over for Twente, they brought in iconic 40-year-old Boschker for his debut in the competition.

It was his opposite number, Heurelho Gomes, who was first required, the Brazilian leaping athletically to his left to save a well delivered half volley from midfielder Wout Brama.

Spurs, unbeaten in their previous six games, called on Gomes again when he saved a deflected shot from a Roberto Rosales shot.

Yet Spurs took the lead in the 12th minute with one of the more comical own goals witnessed in this or any European campaign and timed to perfection for any Christmas blooper DVD.

Twente captain Peter Wisgerhof sent the ball back to Boschker, but under pressure from Roman Pavlyuchenko the goalkeeper in his 21st season at the club attempted a clearance but delivered, instead, an embarrassing air shot and could only watch as it roll into the corner.

Pavlyuchenko looked almost embarrassed as Spurs celebrated the lead, but soon afterwards the ugly side of the game returned when a small pocket of Spurs fans sitting at the opposite end of the stadium to most of the travelling contingent were subject to abuse from the locals and, for a short spell, it threatened to get out of control with English fans trying to get away.

The action returned to the pitch and, in the 22nd minute, a twice-taken penalty drew Twente level. But it was harsh on Spurs and Benoit Assou-Ekotto, who was attempting to protect his face when another Rosales shot hit his arm.

Landzaat hesitated with his run before beating Gomes but the referee made the Dutchman take his kick again and though the goalkeeper got his body to the ball it rolled just over the line.

Spurs responded with a fiercely struck effort from Roman Pavlyuchenko which brought a redeeming save from Boschker.

Before the interval Jermaine Jenas collected a needless and costly booking when he was punished for time-wasting after hesitating to leave following an injury, and will now be unavailable for the first leg of the first knockout tie. Seconds later he was replaced by Lennon.

With Inter Milan losing to Werder Bremen, Spurs’ hopes of winning the group increased and they strengthened their hold on pole position when, with the second half just two minutes old, they regained the lead.

After the Twente defence failed to clear Gareth Bale’s forward ball, Lennon was responsible with a delightfully chipped reverse pass, leaving Defoe with the simple task of nudging it beyond Boschker for his first goal since August.

Such revelry was halted when, in the 56th minute, Twente equalised again, when the impressive Rosales was left unmarked to meet Theo Janssen’s cross. Yet this wonderfully fluctuating game produced another Defoe goal three minutes later.

Wilson Palacios drove forward and forced Boschker to save well, only for Spurs to maintain their record of averaging three goals a game in Europe, with Defoe converting the rebound.

But they lost the lead again, in the 64th minute, when Nacer Chadli curled a delightful free-kick around the Spurs wall.

Spurs missed out on a fourth when Bale’s cross was directed onto the left post by Twente defender Douglas in the closing stages.

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