Pochettino: Spurs must find the right balance between attack and defence

Mauricio Pochettino admits Tottenham need to find the optimum balance between attack and defence after last weekend’s humbling at Stoke.

The 3-0 loss was Spurs’ worst defeat against the Potters for 80 years, and they have now conceded 53 goals this season – the same as Burnley, with only Leicester, Newcastle and QPR shipping more.

“This is a little bit of a shame because we are fifth [in the scoring standings] because we score a lot of goals but we are fifth from bottom in the goals we concede,” said Pochettino.

“We need to find this balance, we need to be more consistent because in the way that we played, we are offensive, we score a lot of goals.

“We have three players with more than 10 goals. I think we are the only team [to do that] as we have Harry Kane, Nacer Chadli and Christian Eriksen. Not Chelsea, not Arsenal, not another team have three players [in double figures].

“But we need to find this balance better offensively and defensively, and we need to improve a lot in our defensive situation.”

Pochettino feels last weekend’s defeat highlighted the lack of consistency that has torpedoed their top-four challenge.

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“I think our first half was very poor,” he said. “The second half was good, but our reaction was late and we need to understand we need to be more consistent next season.

“This season we played very well in many, many games, but we’re not consistent, we didn’t keep our performance level up all season. This is why we did not achieve the top four, I really believe that. But it was good learning for us and the players that we need to be more consistent.

“We cannot repeat the performance that we had in Stoke again. It was a very bad performance, a very poor performance in the first half. In the second half we reacted and went forward with 10 players and played much better. Why? This is difficult to understand. That’s why we need to realise that we need to be more consistent during the whole season.”

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