Pochettino lauds fringe players after APOEL victory

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A much-changed Spurs side cruised to a 3-0 victory on Wednesday, much to the delight of their manager

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino praised his fringe players after they ensured the club's Champions League Group H campaign finished with a flourish on Wednesday.

Pochettino made eight changes from the team that drew 1-1 with Watford in the Premier League at the weekend, but his new-look side cruised to a comfortable 3-0 win over APOEL at Wembley.

Fernando Llorente and Georges-Kevin N'Koudou both scored their first goals for the club, while Son Heung-min continued his impressive recent form with a wonderful finish.

The win means that Tottenham finish top of their group ahead of reigning champions Real Madrid with 16 points – more than any other side in this season's Champions League.

"To finish in a good way was fantastic for us," Pochettino told BT Sport. "Some players who had not played every week had the possibility to play and I am so happy for their performance.

"To finish with 16 points is a fantastic achievement in a difficult group."

Danny Rose, who has spent much of the season watching from the sidelines, was substituted in the second half and appeared to be frustrated by the decision.

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Pochettino, however, explained that it was a precautionary measure after the left-back had received a cut to the face.

"Players are never happy when they are going out," he added. "He had a big cut and the doctors said he needed a stitch and it was impossible to play.

"Of course, the player was frustrated because it was Champions League, but there is nothing wrong."

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