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Spurs fall under nonstop pressure from RB Leipzig (video)

Tottenham Hotspur v RB Leipzig - UEFA Champions League Round of 16: First Leg

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 19: Dele Alli of Tottenham Hotspur reacts after being substituted during the UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and RB Leipzig at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on February 19, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

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Tottenham Hotspur’s quest to return to the UEFA Champions League final took a significant hit when Bundesliga title contenders RB Leipzig visited north London and left town with a 1-0 advantage in the round of 16 on Wednesday.

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Spurs began the game as poorly as a side can do without conceding a goal — or three — in the first 90 seconds of the game, and it didn’t get much better at any point after that. If not for Hugo Lloris making a pair of saves — with a massive assist from the post — inside the game’s first minute and a half, Jose Mourinho’s side would have found itself behind before they had a forward touch of the ball.

After surviving Leipzig’s opening onslaught and finding their footing, Spurs went close through Steven Bergwijn in the 8th minute. Giovani Lo Celso slipped the Dutchman into acres of space and Bergwijn cut back inside onto his right foot before uncorking a curling effort toward the far post. Peter Gulacsi went full-stretch and got a strong hand to the ball and pushed it around the post.

Lloris came up big again not long before halftime, in the 36th minute. Konrad Laimer was allowed to turn atop the penalty area and slide the ball wide left to Timo Werner for a right footed shot from the corner of the six-yard box.

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Spurs began the second half far better than they did the first. Two minutes into the period, Serge Aurier sent a low, bouncing ball into the box and forced Gulacsi to scramble to keep it out after Lucas Moura let it run on. The rebound fell to Bergwijn, who kept his follow-up effort low but pulled it well wide of target.

The breakthrough finall came in the 58th minute, after Ben Davies gave away a penalty kick with a wildly irresponsible challenge inside the box. Werner stepped up to the spot for Leipzig and beat the outstretched hand of Lloris.

Leipzig will host the second leg at Red Bull Arena on March 10.

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