Tottenham's Jan Vertonghen accuses Dortmund players of gamesmanship after Champions League dismissal

Miguel Delaney
Jan Vertonghen is yellow carded by referee Rocchi: Getty 2017

Jan Vertonghen feels he should not have received a second yellow card late in Tottenham Hotspur's 3-1 win over Borussia Dortmund, insisting the referee's decision was "a mistake" and accusing some of the German club's players of looking to influence the official.

The Belgian international was dismissed by Gianluca Rocchi after his arm made contact with substitute Mario Goetze in stoppage time, but Vertonghen claimed after the game that he was only trying to protect the ball. He also felt some of Dortmund's players "made too much of it".

“I didn’t agree with it," Vertonghen said of the decision. "I had no intention of hitting him. For me it was a mistake. I was trying to win the ball, protect it, but had no intention to hit him. I think a couple of guys made too much of it.”

Vertonghen was still pleased with what would have otherwise been a perfect night for Tottenham. They claimed a first win at Wembley this season, to also start their Champions League campaign with victory in what he sees as the crunch game, given that the group also contains defending champions Real Madrid.

“The feeling is good. It was one of the most important games for us in this competition. This is probably the team we were looking at the most so it’s good for us that we won.”

Real meanwhile beat APOEL Nicosia 3-0, to go ahead of Spurs on goal difference.