Some thoughts on Spurs’ 3-0 defeat to Man City:
“We’ve had a tough week of training hard, but the quality has to be better and we all know that. That’s why you play in pre-season. We don’t think ‘it’s pre-season, we don’t care’ – we do care. We now have two weeks to improve ourselves, to get to the level we were at last season and become even better. You don’t want to lose, of course, but we will learn and improve.” (Toby Alderweireld)
Last night saw Spurs play the final game of their US tour to fellow English club Manchester City, it was not the way Pochettino’s side would have wanted to end their tour, with the lilywhites being thrashed 3-1 by Pep Guardiola’s team. In a game which was dominated by the sky blues from the start, Spurs struggled to establish their authority on the game despite the fact that Pochettino had fielded such a strong starting 11. We came up against a city side who looked as if they were entering the middle of their season, they were sharp, intense and pacy and that was what really caught us out last night. Man City should have won by a greater goal margin, with John Stones, Raheem Sterling and Brahim Diaz getting their goals. Despite Spurs almost taking the lead through Dele Alli on two minutes, it was one traffic for the remainder of the game. City taking the lead through centre half John Stones inside 10 minutes, before going on to squander a whole host of chances. They exposed the lack of pace in our side, with former Spurs man Kyle Walker causing a lot of problems for Davies down the right. Guardiola’s side were fast and fluid, they passed the ball around so well and so quickly that we seemed to struggle to stop the fast attacking play of Gabriel Jesus and Raheem Sterling.
Man City’s other two goals were as the result of perfectly timed attacking runs which caught us out throughout the game. There were positives in the game, the performances of Vincent Janssen, Kyle Walker-Peters and Tashan Oakley-Boothe all good. Spurs were poor last night, but it really doesn’t worry me in the slightest, to their credit Man City were superb whilst we seemed tired/lethargic. I think the friendly against Juventus next Saturday will be a far more telling and important game as we look to adapt to playing at Wembley ahead of the new season. In youth related news, it was a memorable weekend for Wayne Burnett’s side who won the European under 21 tournament in France. Burnett’s side beat teams such a as PSG and FC Lorient en route to the final where they met Belgian side Standard Liege, with the game ending 2-2 courtesy of goals from Shayon Harrison and Shilow Tracey. Spurs won the game 5-4 on penalties with goalkeeper Jonathan De Bie making the winning save. It was a brilliant achievement from the talented squad, Spurs’ winger turned wingback Keanan Bennetts also won the player of the tournament for his performances. There was a poignant and touching tribute to Ugo Ehiogu by head coach Wayne Burnett after the game: “Justin Cochrane (Under-23 Assistant Coach) and I have been with them for the last month or so, but they’ve had a really excellent development programme before we got here, so a special mention should go to those two because they’ve been a big part of these players’ development, for sure. Everyone was mindful of that, we had a minute’s silence in memory of Ugo before the game and I think it’s fitting – the players will have been thinking of him, so it’s a nice moment to lift the trophy.”
Finally I noticed that former Spurs academy goalkeeper Tom McDermott (19) has found a new club following his departure in the summer. The goalkeeper who we signed from Warrenpoint in 2014, has joined League of Ireland club Derry City. McDermott is the second Spurs player to join Derry in recent seasons along with Aaron Mceneff who joined in 2015. COYS