He’s rarely publicly critical of his players however Mauricio Pochettino said his “safe” Tottenham side did not look like a team that wants to win trophies, after Saturday’s 1-1 FA Cup fourth-round draw at Newport County.
Harry Kane rescued a draw with an 82nd-minute tap-in and spared Spurs a total humiliation against the League Two club, who led through Padraig Amond’s first-half header and fully deserved a replay at Wembley.
An article by ESPN says that for all our progress in three-and-a-half years under Pochettino, we are yet to win a trophy, however he refused to blame the boggy playing surface at Rodney Parade for the near-miss, and said his players did not match Newport’s motivation.
“We cannot use the pitch as an excuse, we need to look at us,” Pochettino said afterwards. “We were so poor in the first half. We were aware about how Newport play and they are a very energetic team with some quality. In the first half we did not match this level.
He added: “The key for the game was to match them with motivation fight and desire. We lost every challenge in the first half. It was difficult to play forward, always playing safe.The team didn’t show that they really wanted to go to the next round of the FA Cup. That disappointed us a lot because of course the theory is to win trophies. It’s easy to talk about that but I think we missed a massive opportunity today, to show that we really want to win some trophies.
Pochettino went on to say: “We still have the possibility and I hope that that helped us to realised that if we need to fight. I hear in five years here that the FA Cup is magic. It’s magic because a Premier League team and League Two team [can play] and today to be honest I did not see too much difference.”
The article goes on to say that Pochettino was asked if tiredness had contributed to his players’ lack of motivation, to which he added: “I hope you don’t twist my words, because it’s not fair.I didn’t say we weren’t motivated, but not motivated in the same level as Newport. I think in all these aspects they beat us. Of course in the last 30 minutes we increased our level and I think we deserved it in the end because we created many chances. But why wait until the end of the game to fight?”
The article adds how we face Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal in the next three league games, while they also have a two-legged Champions League round-of-16 tie against Juventus next month and Pochettino admitted that a replay was not ideal but he added: “If we want to go to the next round we need to go and win and play and be strong. Of course it’s a game that if we are clever we will learn, if not we are going to miss the opportunity to learn.”
In our well documented interest in signing Paris Saint-Germain winger Lucas Moura, Pochettino said: “We have some options. We are going in the last few days to see if we can add players that add good quality.”
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