Tempers flared between the coaches following a passionate celebration from the Benfica boss Benfica coach Jorge Jesus has played down the touchline spat between him and Tim Sherwood during his side’s 3-1 win over Tottenham on Thursday. The Aguias went 2-0 up thanks to goals from striker Rodrigo and captain Luisao and, though Christian Eriksen’s superb free kick restored some hope at White Hart Lane, the skipper scored his second of the night to put one foot in the Europa League quarter-finals.
Spurs boss Tim Sherwood was enraged by Jesus when the coach held up three fingers in the home dugout’s direction upon the visitors’ third goal and the two coaches did not shake hands upon the full-time whistle.
Sherwood accused his counterpart as “lacking class” following the result, however, Jesus insists there was nothing interesting about the conversation the pair had and it was all a logistical misunderstanding. In Portugal the coaches are not used to being so close to one another,” Jesus told SCI. “The first time I stepped in Tim Sherwood’s area he called my attention to it and told me to leave.
“I did the same thing when he came into my space. We had a verbal chat but it was not anything special.”
When asked by the English media about the incident, Jesus claimed that he was merely celebrating Luisao’s shirt number, despite the fact the defender wears the No.4 and not No.3, but he suggested it is Sherwood’s “problem” if he does not believe him.
The return leg will be played on Thursday March 20 at the Estadio do Dragao, where Spurs must score at least three goals if they are to reach the last eight of the Europa League.