Andre Villas-Boas knows he is failing to exploit one of Tottenham Hotspur’s most important resources. He has played seven games at White Hart Lane so far and won just two. The home crowd, which can be powerful and partisan, has been indifferent. And when they saw Spurs outplayed by Wigan Athletic during their 1-0 loss on Saturday, they were far from impressed.
“We have to accept it,” Villas-Boas said afterwards of the frustrations. “Certainly at home we want to play better. This is a great stadium, great environment and we want to use the power of the stadium to lift us up. We want to do things a little bit better.”
Difficult forthcoming trips to Manchester City and Arsenal might even be relieving. Spurs needed to start well but failed to do so again. “We understand that scoring first is very, very important. It gives this stadium a massive boost and it didn’t happen.
“It can happen because of anxiety. You’re at home, you think you’re going to be superior and yet it doesn’t run as well as you wanted. We try to do everything right and we end up doing everything wrong.”
Wigan, though, did everything right. This was the perfect performance and they ought to have won by more.
“From the first minute to the last it wasn’t a case of ‘Let’s see what Spurs do and see if we can nick something here’,” Martinez said. “It was the opposite. We came here brave and played our football.”
After consecutive wins, Martinez hopes he will not need to produce another resurrection at Easter to keep Wigan up. “It is very dangerous to do what we normally do. You don’t want to do that.”
Ben Watson, who scored the only goal, hopes so too. “We believe we can finish in the top half of the table.”