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Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 Watford – Reaction
MAURICIO POCHETTINO witnessed another below-par performance from his Tottenham Hotspur side and was quick to admit that it wasn’t pretty as the north Londoners salvaged a Premier League point thanks to Dele Alli’s controversial late equaliser against struggling Watford at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Abdoulaye Doucoure arrived unmarked and supplied a tidy finish to Daryl Janmaat’s cross to hand the Hornets an early advantage. And Spurs once again looked devoid of ideas before Alli took advantage of a blunder from Ben Foster – despite appearing to control the ball with his shoulder – VAR confirmed the goal, letting Spurs off the hook.
“The performance wasn’t great,” Pochettino admitted.
“It wasn’t great, but again when you concede an early goal of course in the momentum of the team it’s always tough. Of course, it’s a difficult situation because when you want to build your confidence again and be solid and to have the calm to play because you always need to be calm to play, we started to make rash decisions.
“We were nervous. Of course, the atmosphere wasn’t in the way that you love to play in and it wasn’t the best. I understand of course the fans and everyone. It’s not easy. I was a professional player in this type of situation and it is so difficult to play.
“Of course, Watford defended well and were very strong, never gave the space to us to be clear and have chances to score.”
The Argentine continued: “First half for us was poor of course, but second half I need to tell you that I feel very proud and we fought and always took risks. We started the second half really well and Sonny provided good energy and the team was fighting and never gave up.
“In the end, we got the reward from Dele Alli’s goal and I think fully deserved. That is the first step to build our confidence and we need to stop to consider the poor goal that we conceded.”
Pochettino spoke about the confusion surrounding Tottenham’s goal, with the stadium’s big screens clearly displaying ‘no goal’ before referee, Chris Kavanagh confirmed it had counted.
“It’s nothing to do with us, it’s dependent on the Premier League,” Pochettino added.
“We don’t manage that situation. But of course, I understand that it was a little bit confusing and it was tough for Quique because he thought it was no goal.
“But it’s not Tottenham’s responsibility, it’s the Premier League’s responsibility and of course like everyone, maybe the guy who pressed the button made a mistake.
“Everyone can make a mistake. The most important thing is when you check the goal, it was a goal, it came off his shoulder and I think it was legal. Nothing to say, but I can understand that for Watford, Quique and their players I feel so, so bad.”