Tottenham Hotspur face an uphill battle if they are to qualify for the quarter-finals of the 2019-20 UEFA Champions League after losing 1-0 at home to RB Leipzig on Wednesday.
Timo Werner’s 58th-minute penalty secured the Bundesliga side a potentially crucial first-leg lead in their last-16 tie against Spurs, with the second leg scheduled for March 10 at Red Bull Arena.
Atalanta, meanwhile, have one foot in the last eight after thrashing Valencia 4-1 at the San Siro.
Hans Hateboer scored a double for the hosts, and Josip Ilicic and Remo Freuler both found the net before Denis Cheryshev turned home what will surely only prove a consolation for Los Che.
Spurs were always likely to struggle after Heung-Min Son joined Harry Kane on the treatment table earlier this week:
With his two most potent attackers sidelined, manager Jose Mourinho started with Lucas Moura and Dele Alli up front.
In the first half on Wednesday, though, Hugo Lloris was the busiest player in Spurs’ side as Leipzig made a blistering start:
If it weren’t for the French goalkeeper, Tottenham would have been out of the tie after 45 minutes.
Lloris could do nothing to stop Werner scoring from the spot, though, after Ben Davies fouled Konrad Laimer.
It was nothing more than Julian Nagelsmann’s side deserved, and Leipzig’s away goal makes them heavy favourites to now advance to the Champions League’s last eight for the first time.
Atalanta will also be first-time quarter-finalists when they inevitably advance having dominated Valencia on Wednesday.
They blew the Spanish side away with their remarkable pace in attack, and they never stopped harrying Valencia’s defence.
Freuler netted the goal of the night to make it 3-0 just before the hour, his curling shot from the edge of the area nestling into the corner of the goal.
Five minutes later, Hateboer made it 4-0 to send the Atalanta fans into dreamland and continue the club’s remarkable goalscoring record on the biggest stage:
A slight dip in concentration allowed Cheryshev to pull one back, but the Serie A side should have enough breathing space to book themselves a spot in the next round after a superb display.