Squad virus no excuse for Southampton performance insists Pochettino

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Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

According to an article by ESPN the Tottenham squad was struck down with a virus ahead of Sunday’s 1-1 draw at Southampton, however Mauricio Pochettino refused to use it as an excuse for the result.

We were missing Captain Hugo Lloris and the influential Christian Eriksen through illness and Mauricio Pochettino, who incidentally returned to St. Mary’s five years to the day since his first match in English football, said that some of the players who featured were also ill during the week.

The squad spent Sunday to Thursday last week in Barcelona for a warm-weather training camp, however it seems to have backfired a little as Pochettino said the players had picked up the illness before leaving for Spain.

“A few players were affected last week but it’s not an excuse, our performance wasn’t the best, I admit,”:Pochettino told a post-match news conference.We need to be focussed on improving. There are a lot of reasons — the pitch didn’t help — but in the end we must do better, play better. If we want to be in the top four, we need to improve our level.”

Pochettino was asked which other players had been ill, to which he said: “I’m not going to give names because they’re OK. It’s not an excuse. We tried. The draw is not because we’re tired or had some problems.”

Davinson Sanchez’s unlucky own goal gave an improved Southampton a deserved early lead however Harry Kane’s quick reply, his 99th goal in the Premier League, levelled the score. Kane did go on to miss our Spurs’ best chance to win it in stoppage time.

“Not frustrated — disappointed because our game wasn’t great, our performance wasn’t the best,”: Pochettino added. “Credit to Saints, because they fight, they played well, it was a fair result in the end. True that massive chances in the last minutes for Harry Kane, but I think at the end, if you analyse the game, it’s a fair result.”

The article adds how the result left us two points behind fourth-placed Liverpool, who travel to Swansea on Monday evening, and our next three league fixtures are against Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal.

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