Dembele warns Tottenham they must match Bournemouth’s fighting spirit

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Mousa Dembele insists Tottenham must match the fight of Bournemouth on Sunday if they are to avoid a second defeat in a week.

Spurs travel to the south coast on the back of a Europa League loss to Anderlecht in Belgium as their hosts came from behind to spring a surprise.

Despite their stuttering form in Europe, Mauricio Pochettino’s side are unbeaten in the Premier League since the opening weekend of the season and the Argentinian was rewarded with the manger of the month award for September.

But Dembele is wary that Spurs were too comfortable in Brussels and warned they must not fall into the same trap against Eddie Howe’s men.

“Some promoted sides play more football than the others but I think they all have the same thing and that is the fight,” he said.

“They fight a lot and want to win the game. We can’t make the same mistake as we did against Anderlecht, they did the same – they wanted to win the game much more than us and that was the thing that made us lose that game.

“I have seen them play a few times and we know any team in England, if they come from the Championship they will be very motivated and they always fight 200%, it is always difficult to face these kinds of teams, more difficult than the big clubs.”

Belgium international Dembele came back into the Tottenham side for the draw against Liverpool last weekend in place of the suspended Eric Dier.

He excelled in a more defensive role and will be hoping to retain his place in the coming weeks, despite Dier now being available and Ryan Mason returning to fitness following a knee injury.

“We have that in every position,” Dembele replied when asked about the competition for his place.

“We have lots of good players and if you want to be there on top you have to have this. Every top team has this competition for places and it is quite good I think. It makes us play better and better to stay in the team.

“It (the defensive midfield role) is more combative and I like it very much. If you look at the game against Liverpool I think we played very well as a team and against Anderlecht we started well again. We could have won 4-0.”

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