Tottenham started their Champions League campaign in less than ideal fashion as they were held by a 2-2 draw at Olympiacos.
Spurs fans would have been hoping that the team would start the game with the same intensity that they showed against Crystal Palace last Saturday.
The performance against Palace felt like a turning point for the team as the high pressing and attacking intent that they displayed was reminiscent of the Spurs a couple of years ago.
However, the first half performance against Olympiacos lacked any intent or desire whatsoever. We failed to hang on to the ball or create too many chances and were quite fortunate to go 2-0 up against the run of play.
The home side deservedly equalized in the second half after pulling one back towards the end of the first half.
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has spoken about the drop in performance from the game against Palace and insisted that it had little to with tactics or quality and everything to do with a lack of intent and aggression.
Speaking in the post-match press conference, the Argentine told Football.London, “I think it’s easy to explain. When we are not showing that intensity that the competition demands we struggle. We are not talking about quality. We’re talking about being focused, concentrated, aggressive, anticipating the action.
“How many times did we anticipate today? How many times we were not proactive like we were against Palace. That is a very good example in three days, it’s a massive difference. It’s not about tactics, it’s not about quality players, it’s about the quality of preparing yourself to be ready to fight.
“At this type of level you need to match the opponent in terms of intensity, aggression, in excitement and motivation and then is going to appear your quality when you are connected with the game.That’s the first demand you need to work with. It’s not only the responsibility of one person. It’s everyone’s responsibility and it’s not possible to, in three days, how we start the game today be a massive difference. That is my disappointment. I feel disappointed for everyone.
“Of course we can say after that we scored twice and maybe in the second half we played better, but I think from the beginning of this season we are conceding a lot of chances, a lot of goals and we need to change that way. I think the only way we can change is demanding more from ourselves and that is the way we are going to change, trying to be more consistent over different days, showing more performances like Palace and not like today.”
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The lack of consistency in terms of performance seems to be a big worry at the moment. Even with the five changes that Pochettino made to the side that played against Palace, Spurs still had enough quality out there to have played better. However, leaving the performance aside, a draw away at Olympiacos is certainly a bad result. Spurs will progress from the group as long as they can win their home games.
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