Tottenham wins Champions League group but has plenty room to grow

In one sense, it was just another Tottenham performance. It played poorly in the first half, improved in the second and ended up with the result it needed. It may not have been convincing at the Vélodrome vs. Marseille on Tuesday, but a come-from-behind, 2–1 win at the death took it through to the last 16 of the Champions League as a group winner. And in a season that keeps threatening to fall apart, that is no meager achievement.

But it’s still very hard to work out what it all means. Are Spurs actually any good? We’ll probably have to come back to that after the World Cup. Tottenham’s season has been oddly stop-start. The signings of Richarlison, Yves Bissouma and Ivan Perišić, added to the upturn in form toward the end of last season, had brought optimism that there could be, if not a serious title challenge, then at least comfortable qualification for the Champions League and perhaps a run deep in the competition.

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