Jan Vertonghen couldn’t prevent Mario Balotelli getting the winner.
Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen has predicted that the race for the Champions League will “go to the wire” after his team suffered a defeat to rivals Liverpool.
Days after a morale boosting derby victory over Arsenal, Spurs couldn’t follow that up in another crucial game at Anfield.
The result leaves Liverpool a point behind Spurs, with Mauricio Pochettino’s men now trailing north London neighbours Arsenal by two points in fifth.
However, Vertonghen believes that the race is far from over as five teams fight for the two Champions League places realistically remaining in the table.
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“I think it will go right to the wire,” Vertonghen told the Evening Standard.
“There are too many teams and three or four will keep fighting for the end.
“There are probably two places to fight for. If you want to compete for the top four, you have to win against your rivals. We did against Arsenal but not last night.”
With the Europa League resuming for both teams, both Spurs and Liverpool will have to avenues in which to enter Europe’s premier club competition. For the first time, the winners of the Europa League will be granted a place in next season’s Champions League group stage.