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Kane's fury sparked Spurs' fightback, reveals Trippier

Cool head: Kieran Trippier (centre) is closed down by Nicolas Tagliafico and Dusan Tadic of Ajax
Cool head: Kieran Trippier (centre) is closed down by Nicolas Tagliafico and Dusan Tadic of Ajax
Danny Rose with Harry Kane

By Jonathan Veal

Injured Tottenham striker Harry Kane provided his team-mates with some inspiration at half-time of their Champions League semi-final second leg with Ajax after "going mental".

Kane, who missed the game with an ankle injury but was in Amsterdam on a cheerleading brief, was unhappy after seeing his side go 2-0 down on the night, 3-0 on aggregate.

He went into the dressing room at the break and said some words, according to defender Kieran Trippier.

Spurs went out after the break and completed a miraculous recovery as Lucas Moura's hat-trick earned an away-goals victory which sets up an all-English final with Liverpool in Madrid.

Kane, who ran onto the pitch afterwards to join in the celebrations, is hoping to be fit for the final and Trippier hailed the talismanic striker.

"Harry is exceptional for club and country," said Trippier. "I don't know the timescale with his injury but obviously we're all hoping he can be back (for the final) because of his presence.

"Even here, at half-time, he came in going mental at us because we can do better, which we all knew."

Kane, who was injured in the quarter-final first leg against Manchester City last month, said: "It was a disappointing first half and we let them play. I went into the dressing room at half-time and we knew it wasn't good enough."

Kane now has his sights set on the all-English showdown in the Spanish capital.

"Hopefully. Rehab is going well so far," he said. "I start straight-line running this week. We'll see. So far so good, so if it carries on as it should I would hope to be (fit). There's still a few weeks to go."

Spurs are assessing an injury to Jan Vertonghen which saw him leave the Johan Cruyff ArenA on crutches and with a protective boot on his foot.

Vertonghen played the 90 minutes against his former club and was fully involved in all celebrations after the game.

The Belgium defender, who played the game with a face mask after his first-leg injury to his nose, is unlikely to be risked against Everton in the final Premier League game of the season on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Tottenham defender Danny Rose wants to "go out with a bang" if the Champions League final is his last outing for the club.

Rose's future at Spurs has been uncertain and he was free to leave the club last summer before going on to re-establish himself as Mauricio Pochettino's first-choice left-back.

Whatever is on the horizon for the England international, the final could also be the end of the road for this Spurs group as Christian Eriksen and Toby Alderweireld have as yet failed to agree new contracts, while a host of squad players will be made available to leave in the summer.

Rose, though, insists all focus will be on lifting the silverware and creating history in the Spanish capital.

"I keep seeing my name that I'm being sold," Rose said. "So if that's the case and it's going to be my last game for Tottenham against Liverpool, I'm hoping to go out with a bang and lift a trophy.

"It's a Champions League final, so individual situations have to take a back seat and you have to put the club first. We are going to do that. We realise we have a chance to make history."

Spurs have been five minutes or less away from exiting the competition on four occasions this season, twice in the group stage and in each of the last two knockout rounds.

They have been the outsiders for most of the campaign and that will again be the case in Madrid, when they play a Liverpool team that could have won the Premier League title by then.

Rose added: "If you go back to the Barcelona game, everyone wrote us off, everyone wrote us off against (Manchester) City, everyone wrote us off last week after the Ajax game and now we find ourselves in the final, so we have to keep going, keep believing and keep playing well."

Rose told Ruud Gullit to "eat his words" after the former Holland international, working as a pundit, was highly critical of Spurs after last week's first-leg defeat at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

He said: "Seeing people's comments like Ruud Gullit, it's nice that we fought back and shut him up. Nice to eat his words."

Belfast Telegraph


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