Former Liverpool star and current pundit Jamie Redknapp has said that Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino must follow in the footsteps of Manchester rivals Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola in learning how to seal results from winning positions.
The Lilywhites saw themselves dumped out of the Champions League on Wednesday night after Juventus came from behind to snatch a 2-1 victory at Wembley and a 4-3 win on aggregate, marking the second occasion when the club had let a lead slip to lose in a cup competition this season.
Spurs looked set to progress in the League Cup earlier in the campaign as they took a 2-0 lead over West Ham, but the Irons came back to secure a 3-2 win and force Pochettino and his men to wave goodbye to that possible avenue of silverware.
After Wednesday’s defeat, Redknapp insists it is time for the Argentine to look to his rivals and learn how to manage a match in this situation, criticising him for not bringing on defensive midfielder Victor Wanyama.
Writing in his column for the Daily Mail, he said: “Mauricio Pochettino is a superb manager but he needs to find a way for his team to win from these positions in the way Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola do.
“Tottenham seemed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. With more than an hour gone they were 1-0 up and in control.
“At that stage in the second half, I thought they should have brought on Victor Wanyama and tried to protect their lead but they kept going for another goal.
“In doing so, Spurs left themselves open and were punished. This is a brilliant, young Spurs team but they are in danger of becoming the best side to never win a trophy.”
Football Insider verdict
Redknapp makes a very valid point when discussing Spurs’ tendency to let leads slip, and it has cost them two shots at silverware this season. Does the blame lie at Pochettino’s door? Against Juve, a change in tactics allowed the Italians to threaten too much, but instead of trying to slam the door shut, Poch left his side open and paid the price. Wanyama would have certainly shored up the defence, and knowing a 1-1 draw would have been enough to go through, he reacted too late. Still, this was an inexperienced side who let their heads drop, and it will be a good experience for future endeavours, including their bid for the FA Cup.
In other Tottenham news, Chris Sutton has torn into the “sheer madness” of Spurs’ defeat.