Moussa Sissoko thought Man City had won before staff member told him VAR disallowed Sterling goal
It's not over 'till the fat lady sings
Wednesday night's Champions League quarter-final second leg between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City will go down as one of the all time great knockout fixtures in the competition. Filled with drama from the first minute to the last, the tie swung both ways and Spurs eventually came out on top with a helping hand from VAR.
The Video Assistant Referee was consulted twice, first to decide whether Fernando Llorente had committed a handball offence in scoring Spurs' third goal. The verdict was negative.
The controversial system was then called upon in the dying moments of the game, as what everyone thought was a late winner from Sterling was ruled out for offside, as Agüero stood a matter of inches closer to the goal than Toby Alderweireld at the moment that Bernardo Silva deflected the ball in his direction. It was the harshest of blows for City, but rules are rules, and VAR ensured they were followed.
"In your life have you ever seen a game like that?!"
Tension. Drama. Multiple plot twists...
Man City vs Tottenham was Hollywood blockbuster 🔥#NoFilterUCL puts you in the front row as Spurs made history 🙌 pic.twitter.com/jOudSstfT1
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 18, 2019
Moussa Sissoko, who has undergone a spectacular transformation this season from punchline to key man in midfield, was watching from the bench after coming off with a knock in the second half.
The sight of Sterling's goal going in and the Etihad erupting was enough to send the Frenchman down the tunnel. Waiting in the changing room, heartbroken that Tottenham's valiant efforts had, apparently, been in vain, he completely missed VAR ruling the goal out.
A Tottenham staff member had to inform Sissoko that the goal had been disallowed and Spurs had made it to the last four, prompting the midfielder to put his shirt back on and head back out to the pitch to celebrate, with the rush of adrenaline masking the pain of his injury.
Ahah this is brilliant: Sissoko reached locker room in sadness, as he didn’t realise that Aguero’s goal was cancelled.
And so he stayed until staff started to be back shouting “We did it!” and he asked “We did what?!” pic.twitter.com/jjZb32Q5de
— Tancredi Palmeri (@tancredipalmeri) April 18, 2019
"We thought we were going to do it, and I'm on the bench, then they score the goal to make it 5-3," Sissoko recalled while speaking in the mixed zone after the game.
"When they scored the goal, I was all in my mood, so I went back to the dressing room so didn't see that the goal had been cancelled.
"So in my head, we were eliminated, it was one of the staff members who told me.
"When he came back to the dressing room, 'Incredible, we did it!', I said 'how did we do it'?, he said 'yes, the goal was cancelled!'"
"So at that moment I put on a t-shirt and ran outside to celebrate with my teammates. I forgot the wound and ran away because it was emotional shock."