Wem­b­ley ill omen?

North­west Lon­don venue ‘jinxed’ for Spurs

The Star (Kenya) - - Sports International Football - BY MATT BAR­LOW /

Tot­ten­ham Hot­spur will con­sider aban­don­ing Wem­b­ley Sta­dium should they drop to the Europa League, with play­ers ea­ger to re­turn to White Hart Lane.

Spurs can­not reach the knock­out phase of the Cham­pi­ons League af­ter Tues­day’s 2-1 de­feat in Monaco but one game re­mains in Group “E”.

Mauri­cio Po­chet­tino’s side will face CSKA Moscow on Wed­nes­day week, at Wem­b­ley, the hired home where they have lost both games, to Monaco and Bayer Lev­erkusen.

Avoid de­feat against CSKA and Tot­ten­ham will fin­ish third in the group and go into the Europa League at the last-32 stage, which starts in Fe­bru­ary. They can con­tinue the Euro­pean ties at Wem­b­ley but there is noth­ing in the con­tract with the Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion forc­ing them to stay once the Cham­pi­ons League games are over.

Tot­ten­ham’s play­ers are in no doubt where they would rather be.

“It would be good for us to play at home,” said Moussa Sis­soko. “By home I mean White Hart Lane. We know the sta­dium and it would be bet­ter for us.”

Hav­ing re­turned to the Cham­pi­ons League for the first time in six years, Spurs adopted Wem­b­ley for the com- pe­ti­tion be­cause ca­pac­ity, ac­cess and de­liv­ery space for the broad­cast­ing rights hold­ers was lim­ited at White Hart Lane by the on­go­ing con­struc­tion of the new sta­dium.

They sold more than 85,000 tick­ets for the two Wem­b­ley fix­tures but Po­chet­tino’s team did not set­tle and failed to man­age even a draw.

When Arse­nal borrowed Wem­b­ley for two Cham­pi­ons League cam­paigns in the late Nineties they too were un­able to make it out of the group on ei­ther oc­ca­sion.

/REUTERS

Tot­ten­ham’s Cameron Carter-Vick­ers and Harry Kane in ac­tion as man­ager Mauri­cio Po­chet­tino looks on dur­ing train­ing .

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