Spurs defender Vertonghen: We knew what to expect against Leicester
Jan Vertonghen says Tottenham knew what to expect against Leicester City on Wednesday night and is disappointed the preparation counted for nothing as the Lilywhites suffered a home defeat due to a set piece.
Robert Huth headed home from a corner in the 83rd minute to secure a 1-0 victory for the visitors at White Hart Land and take the Foxes seven points clear of Spurs, level with Arsenal at the top of the Premier League.
Vertonghen said: “They always play the same game – they drop and then they count on set pieces or on one of their strikers. We knew they would do this. They have won most of their games like this and they play their game very well.
“They always approach the game in the same way so we knew what to expect – they just kick every ball they get long and run, and if they don’t have the ball they defend. It works for them and it’s a shame we didn’t win the game.”
It was the second time in four days that Spurs had conceded from a corner against Leicester, after Marcin Wasilewski’s header in Sunday’s FA Cup tie.
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“They know what to do in every single way,” said Vertonghen. “Everyone knows these qualities and that is a very important thing. The set pieces they prepare well.
“We work on those things. We had lots of corners too, we had to do more with them. It’s just the past couple of games – normally we don’t concede from set pieces. It might be something to look at but I don’t think it’s a problem for us.”
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Nonetheless, Tottenham have lost two of their last three league games at home, having also suffered a late loss against Newcastle at the Lane in December.
“We’ve scored some goals but we can improve against teams who drop deep against us,” said Vertonghen.
“We did it before, and we had a couple of good chances and they had as well. But we know if we score they have to come out more and it’s the same thing over and over. I think we were unlucky not to score.
“We’re still playing very well and, as I said after we lost to Newcastle, whenever we don’t win it just feels like an incident [or a one-off] so that’s a very good sign in this team. We know we will be ready on Saturday [at home against Sunderland] and we will do everything to win.”
Tottenham have the chance to get revenge when they visit Leicester in the FA Cup replay at the King Power Stadium next Wednesday but Vertonghen said: “Revenge – I don’t think in these words. Let’s try to win on Saturday first and stay up there in the league.”
Follow me on Twitter @BenPearceSpurs