Our UEFA Champions League campaign ended in heartbreak at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday evening as Juventus scored two second-half goals to cancel out Heung-Min Son’s opener and progress to the quarter-finals with a 4-3 aggregate win.
It was a valiant performance from the team, who took the game to a side which had reached two of the last three Champions League finals and dominated the game for long periods, only to be ultimately undone by two goals in a three-minute spell from Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala.
With just a quarter of an hour on the clock, Harry Kane rounded Gianluigi Buffon just as he did in the 2-2 draw in the first leg, but this time couldn’t convert from a tight angle while Son should have opened the scoring on 38 minutes but fired wide when through on Buffon’s goal. A minute later, though, he did find the back of the net, scuffing Kieran Trippier’s cross past Buffon to send Wembley wild and we held a crucial lead at the interval.
The game turned mid-way through the second half. Son and Dybala had both fired wide at either end before Juventus levelled on the night on 64 minutes when substitute Stephan Lichtsteiner’s cross was flicked on by Sami Khedira and Higuain pounced to poke home from close range. And the momentum of the tie completely swung their way moments later after Higuain set Dybala free through the middle and he advanced on goal before beating Hugo Lloris.
We threw everything at Juventus in the closing stages in search of an equalising goal of our own to send the match to extra time, Christian Eriksen and Son going close, while the visitors produced some heroic defending to keep out our best efforts.
We so nearly found the goal in the 90th minute, though, when Kane climbed highest to meet Ben Davies’ cross, the ball beating Buffon, hitting the post and bouncing along the goal-line before being cleared... and with it went our Champions League hopes for another season.