A Champions League finalist for the first time just four months ago, Tottenham is making history again in Europe’s top club competition this season.
The wrong kind of history.
Tottenham was picked off repeatedly by Bayern Munich in a humiliating 7-2 loss on Tuesday, the first time the English team has conceded seven goals in a home match in any competition in its 137-year history.
It was also the biggest margin of defeat by a team from England playing at home in any European competition.
Adding insult for Tottenham was the sight of Serge Gnabry, a former player at fierce rival Arsenal, scoring four of the goals for Bayern with clinical finishing. All of them came in a wild second half in the Group B game featuring six goals in total.
While it was a statement win for Bayern, which hasn’t been widely regarded as one of the Champions League favorites amid something of a transitional season for the German club, the manner of the defeat exacerbates the concerns surrounding Tottenham and its manager, Mauricio Pochettino.
Tottenham has been far from its best in the Premier League, squandered a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 at Olympiakos in its opening Champions League game, and was eliminated from the English League Cup by fourth-tier Colchester last week. Pochettino is in his sixth year as manager, leading to fears that Tottenham has become stale under the Argentine, who has spoken publicly about tensions in the squad since the loss to Liverpool in last season’s Champions League final.
Another team in trouble is Real Madrid, which has failed to win at least one of its first two games in the group stage for the first time in Champions League history.
Madrid came from two goals down to draw 2-2 at home to Club Brugge in Group A but — like Tottenham — is in last place on one point.
There were first victories in the group stage for Atletico Madrid, a 2-0 winner at Lokomotiv Moscow, and Juventus, a 3-0 winner at home to Bayer Leverkusen, with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring the third for his 127th goal in 164 Champions League matches.
Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City also won and have a maximum of six points from their opening two games.
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Steve Douglas is at www.twitter.coom/sdouglas80