Crooks’ damning verdict on Spurs derby showing


Garth Crooks was hugely critical of our performance in the 2-0 defeat to Arsenal , claiming that we failed to react to our hosts’ fine display according to an article on BBC Football.

We were seen as many people’s pre-match favourites , However we conceded first-half goals to Shkodran Mustafi and Alexis Sanchez at the Emirates Stadium, and the article adds that Mauricio Pochettino has now presided in just one win in his 17 away matches against top six opposition .

And Crooks – who of course played for Spurs between 1980 and 1985 – did not hold back in his damning assessment of his the team.

“It took Spurs two goals to recognise what kind of mood Arsenal were in,” he said on BBC Sport’s Final Score.
“I could see what sort of mood Arsenal were in in the first 10 minutes.

“And that’s part of the DNA of any team, and certainly the manager. If those players are as good as I’m told they are then they should have recognised that this was an Arsenal team that meant business, and you heard me say in the green room that after 10 minutes ‘I’ll settle for a 0-0 here.’
“This is a serious Arsenal team. They’re going for the throat.

Crooksy added: “And Spurs didn’t respond to that. They kept playing all nice and comfortable. But Spurs were finding it difficult to get through to (Petr) Cech. They couldn’t get at Arsenal’s goal.
“I’d have been very comfortable if they had come in a half-time 0-0.

“Look, this is a difficult game, if we come away with something here we’ll be very lucky. But no, they did not adjust at all to the mood Arsenal were in, so yeah I am disappointed.”

Fair assessment by our former forward? In terms of away fixtures against big teams it’s there in black and white and it’s something Mauricio needs to sort out. A little biased I guess I am but we have better players than them in all departments but they wanted it more. If there were doubts over Kane and Alli’s fitness they should never have started, no matter who the opposition were and it was clear they weren’t at the races. Mauricio is a great manager but he can be so stubborn, tactics needed to be altered yesterday but he stuck to it and they exposed us.

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