Harry Winks has admitted that Tottenham were lacking in intensity in the first half of their FA Cup third-round tie against Morecambe and that harsh words at half-time sparked them into action after the interval.
What looked to be quite a straightforward tie on paper for Conte’s men proved to be anything but as the home side struggled to create clear-cut chances in the first half against the League One side.
Things went from bad to worse when Morecambe took the lead in the 33rd minute to send the travelling fans into pandemonium. The Shrimps defended with men behind the ball in the second half and frustrated the Lilywhites.
Conte eventually had to bring on his big guns to turn the result around, with the likes of Harry Kane and Lucas Moura coming on the bench and getting on the scoresheet.
Speaking after Tottenham’s 3-1 win, Winks admitted that the players made their task much harder than it should have been by their lacklustre first-half display.
The midfielder, who scored Spurs’ equaliser on Sunday, told BBC Radio 5 Live (09/01/22 from 16:00 onwards): “It wasn’t a good enough performance. We were sloppy at times, we didn’t play sharp enough, with enough aggression, enough intensity.
“I think everyone could have upped their game by a lot and at half-time, there was a lot of harsh words and honest words said.
“We weren’t good enough, we know that. These are the types of games where, in the first 15 minutes you need to settle everybody, score early and then hopefully it can be an enjoyable afternoon.
“We made it from an enjoyable afternoon into a tough afternoon and we shouldn’t have done that.”
Spurs Web Opinion
Winks was one of the few players who actually played with intensity and aggression in the first half. I was surprised at how lethargic some of the players looked, particularly since this was a rare chance for many of them to impress Conte. The Italian would have likely learned a lot about some of the squad players on the back of Sunday’s display.
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