Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp was delighted his side emerged from a Tuesday of controversy with a Champions League victory in Milan.
Redknapp’s side went to the San Siro full of confidence and produced a hard-fought 1-0 victory, thanks to a late strike from Peter Crouch. But the game was not without its flash points, including a two-footed tackle from Milan midfielder Mathieu Flamini and Gennaro Gattuso’s clash with Tottenham assistant Joe Jordan after the final whistle.
Spurs boss Redknapp was pleased with his side’s team performance, but singled out Aaron Lennon and Heurelho Gomes for special praise.
“It was a fantastic performance, the lads were brilliant,” Redknapp said.
“In the first half we were by far the better team. I knew they would press in the second half and it was hard not to drop deep, but the lads at the back were magnificent. We hit them on the break and it was well deserved. For the first 25 minutes we were the better team.”
“We said at half-time to give the ball to (Aaron) Lennon as he had the beating of his man. He did fantastically to square it (for the goal).”
“The whole team were magnificent, every one of them did their job. (Heurelho) Gomes made big saves at vital times. It was a great night for the crowd. It was important to play in the right areas and pick the right ball – and we did.”
But Redknapp was less enamoured with Milan midfielder Mathieu Flamini’s two-footed lunge on Vedran Corluka which forced the Croatian off the pitch.
Remarkably, Flamini was only given a yellow card for the tackle, leaving Redknapp incensed.
“That’s a red card all day – how do you not get a red card for that?” he said.
“It’s an absolute disgrace – they should look at that surely and they should do something about that, that is a dangerous, dangerous tackle.”
Milan boss Massimiliano Allegri bemoaned his side’s mistake in the lead up to the counter-attack that provided the Spurs goal, but says his side can still qualify for the quarter-finals.
“The mistake with that counter-attack cost us a lot,” Allegri said.
“We were pushing hard at that time, trying to gain an advantage. Tottenham defended well and closed down all the space – it had been a really difficult game for us. We made too many mistakes, especially when we were not in possession.”
“We played better after the restart, even if we were only dangerous from free-kicks. This defeat is a pity because Tottenham didn’t create many chances and now we must overturn this result in London. It will be a different game, but I think qualification is still up for grabs. We have to play with balance and have faith in our quality.”