Mauricio Pochettino makes bold claims over Tottenham's 5-1 defeat to Newcastle
By Russell Edge
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has said that the club’s 5-1 defeat away to Newcastle United on the last day of the 2015/16 season was all his fault and that he was deeply embarrassed by the result.
Spurs arrived on Tyneside on the final day of the campaign sitting in second place in the league table, having pushed shock champions Leicester City all the way in the title race and receiving plaudits from fans and pundits for their impressive style of play.
Newcastle meanwhile had already had the ignominy of relegation confirmed, having appointed Champions League winning manager Rafa Benitez to try and save their season earlier in the campaign.
However, despite the gulf in league positions, it was the Magpies who came out on top, dominating a lethargic looking Spurs side in a 5-1 victory, who even had a man advantage after Aleksandar Mitrovic saw red with just over 20 minutes to play.
The result saw Spurs slip into third behind north London rivals Arsenal, and now Pochettino has revealed his own personal feelings about the result, making some strong claims about his players.
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In Guillem Balague’s book ‘Brave New World: Inside Pochettino’s Spurs’, serialised on Sky Sports’ website, he said: “It was all my fault. I did something wrong.
“Where was the individual commitment that gave us that special feeling of belonging to the group?
“I get very annoyed when I cannot find the way to motivate, to generate the passion necessary to enjoy this game.
“Everybody was impressed by our campaign. There was talk that we’d played the best football, but I couldn’t brush off the embarrassment of what had happened on the final day.
“Finishing third is certainly not the same as finishing second, even though some seem to think it is.”
While Newcastle rebuilt in the Championship under Benitez, Spurs once again pushed for their first league title, but were unable to topple a dominant Chelsea side, finishing as runners up.
The opening match of the current campaign saw Tottenham return to Tyneside for a repeat of the Magpies’ last top flight match, but they were unable to replicate their heroics as Spurs ran out 2-0 winners in a confident performance.
In other Tottenham news, Dean Ashton has blasted Pochettino after his actions following the club’s defeat to West Ham.