CHAMPIONS LEAGUE TALK
It was for me the unseen issue before the game, not the size of the Wembley pitch, not the difficulty of UEFA Champions League football but the mental reaction of players to the occasion. I penned an article before the game that we had to go to Wembley mentally to win and not to 'enjoy' the occasion.
The bottom line is we didn't. We fell into the trap of taking in the experience of the occasion, much like a tourist takes in their surroundings. Where was the killer instinct? Son, who in my opinion should have been on the bench, took far too long with his chance, supplied by Kane early on. His control was sloppy, he moved the ball then shot and seemed to take an age to do so giving the defender all the time he needed to make an easy clearance.
The mentality was the theme of Mauricio Pochttino's after game assessment to the assembled reporters and is the issue we will have to confront for our next Wembley game and indeed the away tie at CSKA Moscow that has now become very important..
“That’s too good an excuse [Wembley]. We need to work, to show more hunger. We need to show a different image.
“We fought a lot last season to be here and your feeling is ‘Why not do more? If this was basketball, I would have taken them all off.
“It was a game that we started well. Then we conceded a goal, and you cannot concede at this level - the Champions League or the Premier League - when you play for Tottenham.
“It is difficult to accept. The second goal was the same. When you concede like this you can speak about many things but 2-0 down was very difficult.
“We created. I think we were better than Monaco. But to win you need to show more and create more.”