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'Mourinho will be praying Man City get banned' - Spurs facing fight to secure Champions League return

04:16 GMT+3 11/03/2020
Jose Mourinho Tottenham RB Leipzig 19022020
The Portuguese tactician may now rely on the fate of another club to see if his side play in Europe's top competition next season

Former Tottenham player Tom Huddlestone believes manager Jose Mourinho will be praying Manchester City's UEFA ban is upheld to ensure the club can secure Champions League qualification next season. 

Mourinho saw Spurs knocked out of the competition on Tuesday night after a 3-0 second-leg loss to RB Leipzig in their last 16 clash which ended 4-0 on aggregate. 

Currently eighth in the Premier League and seven points shy of fourth-place Chelsea, Tottenham face a real fight to secure an automatic Champions League spot. 

One potential lifeline however rests on whether City, currently second, have a two-year UEFA ban over Financial Fair Play breaches upheld, which would mean whichever side finishes fifth would instead get to compete in the Champions League. 

That outcome would offer some genuine hope to Mourinho's side, according to Huddlestone, with Spurs low on morale after also being knocked out of the FA Cup last week in a surprise loss to Norwich. 

"Mourinho was probably licking his lips at the thought of Norwich at home in the FA Cup, going into a potential quarter-final against Man Utd but it wasn’t to be," Huddlestone told BBC 5 Live

"He’ll be praying that Man City do get a ban so that fifth place is up for grabs which is more realistic, especially with Harry Kane back on the training ground.”

For the first time in his career, Mourinho has now failed to win six straight games in all competitions with Tottenham a clear second best on Tuesday against their German opponents. 

"They’ve just been outclassed. RB Leipzig were well drilled, they knew exactly what was expected of them, whereas Tottenham just looked a bit lost," Huddlestone added.  

"There was a huge gulf between the quality on display this evening."

Spurs next host Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday with the Red Devils in much better form - currently unbeaten across their past 10 games. 

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side are currently fifth and, like Tottenham, will be hoping such a finish this season could be enough to secure Champions League football. 

Manchester City have appealed their UEFA ban with former Red Devil Gary Neville recently claiming the club will likely have the ban overturned