Tottenham vs West Brom: Mauricio Pochettino demands more as Spurs make worst start to season since Glenn Hoddle era

A James Morrison goal was enough to condemn Spurs to defeat and Pochettino believes his side were 'very slow'

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The Independent Football

Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino knows improvements are needed across the field if they are to avoid a repeat of Sunday's shock defeat to previously winless West Brom.

The former Argentina international enjoyed a perfect start to life at White Hart Lane, although things have gone awry since he won his first four matches at the helm in all competitions.

Spurs' current wait for a win stretched to a fourth game on Sunday against a West Brom side that began the day bottom of the Barclays Premier League, before leaving north London deserved 1-0 victors.

James Morrison's header proved the difference but it could have been worse for Tottenham given their flaky defending throughout and toothlessness in front of goal.


"Maybe in the beginning of the game we were wrong in our set-up," a clearly agitated Pochettino said.

"We played very slow and we gave the possibility to West Brom that made the half a good performance.

"This is, for me, the reason. This is my first feeling after the game.

"I need to analyse and fix because maybe we made a mistake in some position in the pitch."

Pochettino admits he has to decide whether recently-appointed captain Younes Kaboul and Vlad Chiriches will be his first-choice centre-back pairing, as well as how to make his team show more of a cutting edge in front of goal.

James Morrison scores for West Brom

Spurs managed just one effort on target in a performance in which the players did not show the same passion displayed on the touchline by their manager.

"This is my surprise," Pochettino said when it was suggested his players were subdued. "I think we need to show more.

"We need to show more because each and every game in the Premier League is difficult.

"Maybe West Brom arrived to White Hart Lane with only two points and last in the table, but we need to show respect.

"I believe that we were wrong in our way and we played very slow, there was a lack of movement. You need play football that is aggressive.

"We were wrong, we were wrong in this way. Always it is difficult when the opponent believes in themselves and you need to show that you are the best team in the way we play, always you put risk in your game."

Tottenham 0 West Brom 1 match report

While Pochettino wants improvements, it is a case of more of the same for Alan Irvine after tasting victory for the first time as West Brom manager.

Eyebrows were raised when the Scot was named Pepe Mel's successor in the summer, with the Baggies' alarming start to the season exacerbating fans' concerns.

"Watching Match of the Day last night, the table didn't look very nice," Irvine said of the pressure.

"When you've got a game in hand, it does not necessarily mean you're going to get the points from that game, especially when you are coming to White Hart lane.

"I suppose I would be lying if I said there wasn't an element of relief, but the over-riding emotion is one of real pleasure for the players, for the club as a whole, everybody involved and, of course, for our fans.

"I am more pleased than relieved."