Lucas Moura “deserves a statue” after his hat-trick took Tottenham into an all-English Champions League final, says team-mate Christian Eriksen.
Ajax led 3-0 on aggregate – but Moura’s goals, including a 96th-minute winner, took Tottenham through on away goals to face Liverpool on 1 June.
Moura himself called it “the best moment of my career”.
Eriksen said: “It was a ridiculous game; we were really far down, we tried to fight back, we were just lucky.”
The Danish playmaker added: “We had to fight. We are relieved.
“Today it was non-tactical, more of a fight and heart performance, heart and Lucas Moura – he’s how we won the game.
“He deserves it, it has been a rollercoaster of a season, for him to get us in the final, I hope he gets a statue in England after this, we are blown away.
My players are heroes – Pochettino
Mauricio Pochettino, who has been Tottenham’s manager since 2014, was in tears at the final whistle – and again during an emotional post-match interview on BT Sport.
He said: “The emotion is amazing, thank you to football. My players are heroes – in the last year I was telling everyone this group are heroes – in the second half they were amazing.
“Thank you to everyone who has believed in us. To describe this in words is difficult.
“They are all heroes but [Lucas Moura] was a superhero. It’s difficult to compete at this level. I am so grateful to be a coach: to be in football and to live this type of football.
“We showed we love the sport and football. Today was amazing. It was a joy to watch this kind of game.”
Always believe in this moment – Moura
Tottenham’s hat-trick hero Lucas Moura, speaking to BT Sport, said: “It’s impossible to explain what I’m feeling. I’m very happy and very proud of my team-mates.
“Always believe in this moment. We gave everything on the pitch and deserved this moment – we are family. It’s impossible to explain, a big gift from God I’d like to share with team-mates, friends and family.
“It’s about not only me but my team-mates and teamwork. Everyone worked really hard. It’s difficult to play here against Ajax but I always believed in my team-mates. Even without key players we did really well. We need to fight in every game like this.
“The football is amazing – it gives us a moment like this. We cannot imagine. It’s the best moment in my career.”
Liverpool fightback motivated us – Rose
Tottenham’s fightback came 24 hours after Liverpool overturned a three-goal first-leg deficit to beat Barcelona 4-0 at Anfield in the other semi-final.
Spurs full-back Danny Rose said his side had been motivated by Jurgen Klopp’s team.
“We saw Liverpool last night, and it goes to show it’s not over until it’s over.” said Rose.
“The gaffer mentioned Liverpool’s display at the hotel before the match. The gaffer doesn’t mind us losing but we have to lose the right way.
“We’re lucky we’ve gone through and we look forward to the Champions League final.”