Wednesday, 2 October 2019

Pochettino said his players 'gave up' against Bayern

Once seen as the coming Premier League force, the drop-off for Spurs has been alarming with their manager getting diminishing returns from his players

The Tottenham crisis is one which patently runs deeper than results. It’s obvious that there’s been a change for the worse in the climate around the club but it’s taken a while for the effects to be felt on-field.

Spurs capitulated against Bayern Munich and were on the receiving end of the heaviest defeat ever suffered at home by an English club in European competition.

It was an historic humiliation.

 

If something was getting between the players and the manager away from the field of play, then their run to the Champions League final last season disguised it to a certain extent.

Beneath the surface however for a long time has been the truth that the manager has been getting diminishing returns from his charges.

The characteristic patterns, the intensity and the levels of concentration which springboarded Spurs into the reckoning as one of the country’s best teams have all gradually faded away.


Huge amounts of fortune were present in their Champions League knockout victories over both Manchester City and Ajax, and Spurs probably got what they deserved in the final against Liverpool.

Through the end of the last Premier League season and into this one too Spurs have had to grind for every point they get. Nothing is coming with fluency. Arguably the only times they’ve played well since the spring were in the 4-0 home win against relegated Huddersfield in April and against Crystal Palace a few weeks back.

On Tuesday night, however, they had been excellent for a long time against Bayern. Niko Kovac, the Bayern coach, admitted after that Spurs had been the better team for the first 15 minutes and they were deservedly in front.





GOAL

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