Antonio Conte has praised the way in which Tottenham dug deep to find a win against Watford but admits he wants to see an improvement against sides that set up to be defensively compact.
Tottenham needed a winner from Davinson Sanchez deep into second-half stoppage-time to claim all three points in the New Year’s Day encounter at Vicarage Road.
The visitors dominated the lion’s share of possession throughout proceedings but often couldn’t find the killer pass to trouble what was a resolute Watford back line.
However, Conte was pleased with the way Spurs managed to fight to grab the win at the very end, with the gap to the Premier League’s top four now down to just two points.
He said (via Football.London): “I think at the end, it was good to find a way to get three points. Against Southampton, we weren’t able to find the way.
“I think that during the game, when you create chances to score, you have to try to exploit these chances, especially in this type of game when your opponent is well organised defensively, with nine or 10 players behind the ball. It is not easy.”
Spurs boasted a healthy 74 per cent possession against the Hornets, which was an aspect that pleased Conte going forward.
But Spurs’ problems regarding what to do with the ball has also led the Italian to admit that he wants to see a better use of possession against teams that sit deep.
He added: “I think that we have a team that is very good if we find space to attack. When we find a team that they are very narrow and they defend very well with all the team under the ball, we need to improve.
“I know that we have space for improvement and also to improve the quality in the final pass.”
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Watford were very compact and resolute defensively which made it hard for Spurs to carve out many good quality chances going forward.
It is good that the side managed to grind out a win without playing particularly well, but the play against deep blocks remains to be a problem that needs addressing.
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