Mauricio Pochettino insisted he was ‘not worried’ about a dip in form that has seen Tottenham win once in ten matches, and had no regrets at rotating players in a week of successive defeats.
Speaking after the 2-1 defeat at Chelsea the Spurs manager added he felt his side deserved at least a draw.
“I think we played well,” he said. “I am not worried.The players showed a good response to Monaco, they showed the right mentality. There were many positives. But we lost. In football you have to score goals and defend well. Maybe we were a little bit better, but they got the better result.”
Pochettino rested key players for the midweek match in Monaco, which concluded in a defeat that ended their Champions League campaign, but added: “I do not regret the team selection. We need to use the whole squad. You have to rest some players sometimes. We are professional and try to make the right decision for the team. If we had won you would not be asking.”
The absence of Moussa Sissoko from the 18-man squad was, he said, “tactical”. The French international has only completed 90 minutes twice since his £30m transfer deadline signing from Newcastle.
Chelsea vs Tottenham player ratings
Chelsea vs Tottenham player ratings
1/22 Thibaut Courtois - 6 out of 10
Barely had anything to do all game, nothing he could do about Tottenham’s goal.
2/22 Cesar Azpilicueta - 6 out of 10
In the end had a fairly quiet game as Tottenham faded and wasn’t overly tested.
3/22 David Luiz - 6 out of 10
Made a mistake in the build up to Spurs’ goal, but got better as the game went on.
4/22 Gary Cahill - 6 out of 10
Ultimately had a fairly easy ride as Tottenham failed to really test Chelsea despite their good first half.
5/22 Victor Moses - 8 out of 10
Subbed with 10 minutes to go, was at the heart of Chelsea’s revival, his great season continues. Took his goal well.
6/22 Marcos Alonso - 6 out of 10
The quieter of Chelsea’s wing backs, but was more influential after Chelsea’s disastrous start to the game.
7/22 N'Golo Kante - 7 out of 10
Outplayed in the first half but his influence grew as Chelsea seized control of proceedings as the game wore on.
8/22 Nemanja Matic - 7 out of 10
Played in Pedro with a great assist for the first goal and had more and more influence as the game went on.
9/22 Pedro - 7 out of 10
Took his equalising goal brilliantly and was a constant menace to the Spurs defence helped lead Chelsea’s revival.
10/22 Eden Hazard - 7 out of 10
Subbed with quarter of an hour to play, not at his influential best particularly in the first half, but improved as game went on.
11/22 Diego Costa - 7 out of 10
Didn’t score but provided a great assist for Moses’ goal, running threateningly at the Tottenham defence.
12/22 Hugo Lloris - 6 out of 10
Hardly tested and couldn’t do much about either goal, but still conceded two.
13/22 Kyle Walker - 6 out of 10
Pacy as ever, but didn’t influence things as much as his manager would have liked.
14/22 Kevin Wimmer - 5 out of 10
Playing out of position and quite often looked a bit exposed.
15/22 Eric Dier - 6 out of 10
Like many of his teammates started well but faded as the game wore on.
16/22 Jan Vertonghen - 6 out of 10
Stifled Chelsea for most of the first half, but ultimately unable to prevent the Blues’ revival.
17/22 Victor Wanyama - 6 out of 10
Outplayed his more celebrated opposite numbers in the first half, but ultimately was powerless to prevent Chelsea coming back into the game.
18/22 Mousa Dembele - 6 out of 10
Good first half, but increasingly anonymous as the game wore on.
19/22 Christian Eriksen - 6 out of 10
Great strike to give Tottenham the lead, but otherwise didn’t influence things much.
20/22 Dele Alli - 6 out of 10
A quiet game overall and never really threatened the Chelsea defence other than the occasional flash.
21/22 Heung Min-Son - 6 out of 10
Subbed with half an hour to go. Fairly quiet game, didn’t manage to have much influence. Spurs really miss Eric Lamela.
22/22 Harry Kane - 6 out of 10
Well marshalled by the Chelsea defence, had a goal correctly ruled out for offside.
“This was a test,” said Antonio Conte, Chelsea’s manager, “because Tottenham are a very good team with very good organisation. They started better than us, they put us under a lot of pressure and scored a fantastic goal. But Pedro’s goal gave us confidence.
“We are another team to the one which lost to Arsenal and Liverpool [earlier in the season]. If we had been the same team we would have lost this game.
“We should be pleased, but on Monday we have to start thinking about Manchester City [on Saturday]. It is important to stay humble, to continue to work and trust in our work. We have to keep improving.”Reuse content