Champions League: Tottenham boss expects strong Barcelona

Champions League: Tottenham boss expects strong Barcelona

They are still outsiders to progress, however, and will have to produce one of the most famous nights in the club's history if they want to do it, as they have go to group winners Barca in a fortnight and match the result of Inter, who play at home to PSV Eindhoven.

'They are serious professionals, ' he said.

After struggling to prove his worth since arriving in 2016, Sissoko is living up to the 30 million pound (then $40 million) fee Newcastle received for the French midfielder.

"When (Alli) is under pressure he is unbelievable", Pochettino said. "We need to arrive that way in Barcelona".

Tottenham must still beat Barcelona on December 11 at the Camp Nou to make sure of advancing to the knockout phase. Tottenham and Inter went to the English squad with different goals and fighting for the same place: the Italians needed only a draw to secure qualification for the next round of global competition, while the English needed victory to remain alive in the Champions League.

Spalletti hopes Barcelona doesn't give its stars a rest.

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"If we do what we need to do I think we will go through, it depends on us even if practically it doesn't", he said.

'It hasn't occurred to me that players like Gerard Pique, Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez could take their foot off the pedal or not care about losing at home'.

"I expect that they are going to play with all the best players, but I don't know how they are going to prepare the side", he added.

Back in the Champions League after seven years, Inter has the easier task against PSV, which are already guaranteed to finish last in the group and has nothing to play for. "If we can win this game it will give us a great chance of going through". But a campaign that was in peril is alive again for Tottenham, which has never lifted the European Cup. "It is about what we do", he said. "We played some good football but we didn't get the points in the first (two) games".

The north Londoners are on a fine run in the Premier League as they made it five wins in a row with an impressive 3-1 win over Chelsea at the weekend and they will look to reinforce their title credentials with a positive result in the North London Derby at Arsenal on Sunday afternoon.

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