Did you have any complaints about that result?
I don’t know. I have no complaints about my players. That is for sure. The result could be different yeah. Could be 3-1, could be 2-2, could be different, but difficult for my players to do different to what they did.
So I think that the only thing I can say is with what we have at the moment, the power we have or don’t have, the almost unique situation we’re living in at the moment, it’s very difficult to do better, especially when the opponent scores before us.
t’s as simple as that. If they press us high, they know that if we go long we don’t win a single ball against the opponent’s defenders, If they drop the block and go with low block, they know it’s difficult for us to get into the box, especially from the sides.
So opponents they know if they score a goal before us we’re in trouble.
I’m so proud of the boys they fought for the last seconds until a result. I cannot ask more from them, especially Lucas, Lo Celso, Bergwijn these boys that are playing every minute and trying to do miracles in positions that are not their positions. I cannot complain.
I am going to be repetitive. I would love to be at July 1. I would love to be in pre-season, working with Harry Kane, Sissoko and Sonny. That’s not possible. We have three long months to go in three competitions where we are still [in it]. It’s going to be three long months.
These boys will learn a lot from that. They will learn about resilience, effort, going to their limits. So I think a very difficult experience for the boys, but a very good experience for the future.
Bearing in mind those limited options do you stand by your decision to drop Dele Alli?
Yeah, because we knew that tactically it was very important for us to play in a certain way. It was also very important for us to try with fast people when they were fresh. Well, fresh so-so, because thanks to the TV broadcasters’ choices it’s difficult to speak about freshness when we play Aston Villa two days before Leipzig and Chelsea at 12.30 two days after Leipzig.
But we have strange game-plans but we need to have them because there’s not another way. For example, while Lamela played so well but only for 20 minutes, you must think I’m an idiot.
But even in the warm-up, he was in communication with me about his feelings, ‘Can I go or not?’. That guy who played so well for 20 minutes, in the warm-up, he was in communication with me because he was not sure he could go. That’s Lamela. Amazing guy, fantastic player and trying to help the team.
So we started the game thinking that okay Lucas and Bergwijn they are still more or less fresh, so let’s try. We tried, we didn’t score. Caballero made a great save, we know we cannot create lots of chances. So in the last part of the game what’s the plan late in the game? We bring on Lamela if he can. We bring Dele.
We didn’t have a presence in the box, the opposition is going to try with the low block so let’s try to have one with Dele. We are trying to do things so very difficult for us. I’m always going to be a bit repetitive. Nothing, nothing at all to criticise my players. Nothing at all. Exactly the opposite.
Are you aware of the situation regarding Giovani Lo Celso’s challenge on Azpilicueta?
I hope the noise is the same noise as when the VAR kills us. I hope the noise is exactly the same, as against Liverpool when Robertson should get a a red card and didn’t, against Watford when Capoue should get a red card twice, with the same gentleman, Michael Oliver. I hope noise is the same noise?
But for Stockley Park to turn around and say it was a mistake….
Why didn’t they say when they made a mistake against Liverpool and against Watford? That is what I mean by the same noise.
Should the referee have gone to the pitchside monitor?
That’s not my problem.
You are making it sound like the last three months are beyond you?
Very difficult. The next three months are going to be very difficult. In three or four weeks, (Moussa) Sissoko is back and he’s not a striker but he is another solution for us. I hope that by April, Sonny or Harry (Kane) makes a fantastic recovery like Hugo Lloris did. Hugo came to play a couple of weeks before the expected time.
Nobody expected him to come when he did. So with effort of the players, medical people, sports science people that works with the injured players, let’s hope it’s not until the end of the season. Not months but weeks, like Simon (Felstein – Spurs’ press officer) says. I hope in May we we play three Premier League matches I hope we have them all. But we’re speaking about the last three. It’s going to be very difficult, especially when we go into an accumulation of matches.
We don’t even magic players to rotate the other ones, that is the big problem for us. Look at Chelsea, played striker of the world champions (Olivier Giroud). On the bench was the second striker of England after Harry Kane (Tammy Abraham), in the stands the second striker of the Belgium national team (Michy Batshuayi).
We have zero strikers the pitch, zero on bench or zero in stands. We have two in the hospital. That’s the situation, it’s an incredible negative situation. I’m very proud of the boys, I cannot ask more from them. I am happy with them.
How did you know how they play?
?? Jose Mourinho bemoans his lack of attacking options following Spurs’ game versus Chelsea:
? “We have zero strikers on the pitch".
? "Zero strikers on the bench".
? "Zero strikers in the stands & two in hospital".
— Last Word On Spurs? (@LastWordOnSpurs) February 22, 2020
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) February 22, 2020