Just before the Europa League draw today in Nyon, Switzerland, if you'd ask most Tottenham fans who they wanted to play in the Round of 16 they would've said "anyone but Dortmund."
Tottenham Hotspur drew perhaps the best remaining team in the field, and will play one of the best Bundesliga sides. They may have had an off-year last season and lost Jurgen Klopp to Liverpool, but they're back in second place this season behind Bayern Munich and they're a stellar football club. They still have Pierre-Emerick Aubemayang, Marco Reus, Nevin Subotic, and Shinji Kagawa, and they still play exciting, attractive football under Thomas Tuchel.
Some are going to be upset about this, but I'm actually not. Spurs are likely going to be competing in the Champions League next season against equal or much better competition. These matches should be a super effective measuring stick to see how they stack up against outstanding European competition. Besides, if you're in an international competition, don't you want to beat the best teams to win it? If Spurs are going to win the Europa League, they might as well do it by taking down the best of the field.
Besides, just imagine the atmosphere at both of these matches. These are two teams with amazing fan support that are in form and playing exciting football. It's gonna be amazing, win or lose.
OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH YEAH, BABY. STRAP IN.
Meanwhile, Gary Lineker took to Twitter to troll the other major match-up of the draw.
2 footballing Giants have been drawn together in the Europa league as Dortmund face Spurs. Elsewhere Manchester United take on Liverpool.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) February 26, 2016
Full Europa League Round of 16 Draw:
- Shakhtar Donetsk vs. Anderlecht
- Basel vs. Sevilla
- Villarreal vs. Bayer Leverkusen
- Athletic vs. Valencia
- Liverpool vs. Manchester United
- Sparta Praha vs. Lazio
- Dortmund. vs. Tottenham Hotspur
- Fenerbahce vs. Braga