Tottenham boss Pochettino rues lack of energy after Boly equaliser
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Spurs saw their five-match winning streak in the Premier League come to an end in their final match of the year
Mauricio Pochettino admitted Tottenham Hotspur struggled to find the required energy in the final part of their 3-1 loss at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Spurs appeared on course for a sixth successive Premier League victory at half time, as Harry Kane’s 22nd-minute effort gave them the lead, but Nuno Espirito Santo’s side fought back admirably in Brent.
Three second-half goals in the final 17 minutes, courtesy of Willy Boly, Raul Jimenez and Helder Costa, gave Wolves a deserved success and after playing Everton on December 23 and AFC Bournemouth on Boxing Day, Tottenham simply ran out of steam.
“We conceded the first goal and in the last 20 minutes it was tough for the team to find energy to be competitive or to try to win the game,” Pochettino said.
“Of course we started to feel this a few minutes before we conceded which is why we were ready to add a fresh player like (Oliver) Skipp to help the team and we couldn’t because we conceded in the action before we were going to make the change.
“I think the game was under control in the first half, and I think maybe it was easier than we expected in the first half. We dominated the game and played so easily. They played so deep, chased us and we didn’t concede one chance.
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“But in the second half, I think maybe we started to feel the game was over and when you start to feel the game is over and you play in the way that you play, you start to decide in a wrong way.
“We started to play too many long balls and then it was so difficult to recover the ball and we started to play more with our heart than our head and started to expend a lot of energy.
“Then when you need the energy in the end you miss that, so I’m very disappointed, like the players, but nothing to say.
“Some games can happen with this type of result and now we need to move on and be sure that we are ready for the next game.”
Prior to Boly’s leveller in the 73rd minute, Spurs had Skipp on the touchline ready to come on.
However, Pochettino and the fourth official had to wait for the corner to be taken and from it, the Wolves defender headed past Hugo Lloris.
Jimenez then fired the visitors ahead just six minutes later with a curling effort before substitute Helder Costa wrapped up the scoring with a side-footed finish following a swift counter-attack.
“I don’t care about what the people say,” Pochettino said. “I don’t care and I cannot control what happens around us. If you see my comments always it’s about being humble, to talk with respect about the position and the competition and other teams.
“We know very well, I think because of experience, if you’re not 100 per cent in every single game in the Premier League it can happen. It’s not enough to play 60 or 70 minutes, you need to play 95 minutes at your best.
“Like today, we dropped a little bit our energy and focus and then in the last 20 minutes we conceded three goals. That can happen.
“That can happen to us, it can happen to Wolves, to Liverpool, it can happen to Manchester City.
“That is why it’s so tough to win the Premier League, because you need to be consistent and today for us it’s a clear example. If we are not consistent enough, with not only good quality during the game, and the right energy, it’s difficult to compete for big things.”