Colchester vs Tottenham: Mauricio Pochettino at divisions within his Spurs squad

The Independent Sports 1 month ago

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has alluded to “different agendas” within his squad after they were dumped out of the Carabao Cup at League Two Colchester.

After labouring to a 0-0 draw in 90 minutes, they lost 4-3 on penalties with Christian Eriksen and Lucas Moura missing.

Tom Lapslie scored the decisive kick for the U’s as they added another Premier League scalp to the collection following their beating of Crystal Palace – also on penalties – in the last round.

Much of Pochettino’s dialogue in the early part of the campaign has been about how his squad were unsettled, with the likes of Eriksen, Jan Vertonghen, Danny Rose, Toby Alderweireld and Victor Wanyama all uncertain of their future.

Pochettino was hoping that would correct itself after the European transfer window shut at the start of the month, but he says his side are still playing catch up.

The winger made a prolific breakthrough into the first-team last season, scoring three goals in six games, before being ruled out with a groin injury. After spending six months at RB Leipzig last season, he has been promoted to the senior squad on a full-time basis.
The skilful Netherlands youth international impressed in the U18s Premier League last season, cutting in off the left-wing scoring 7 goals and adding a further four assists.
Suffered a cruel injury blow soon after joining the Cherries from Bristol for £13m over the summer. The full-back has huge potential and will be hopeful of breaking into the starting eleven quickly.
The young Irish striker had a brilliant season for the U23s, ending the season with 16 goals in 18 appearances. Can hope to make his breakthrough in the
Joined after ending a two-year scholarship at Arsenal and was included in Burnley's pre-season tour of Portugal.
Starring on loan at Wigan last season, the versatile full-back was named in the Championship team of the season and is pushing for a starting place after Davide Zappacosta's departure.
The young full-back was included in the club's pre-season plans and has been compared to Aaron Wan-Bissaka by teammate Andros Townsend.
The centre-back joined the Toffees from Newcastle for a fee that could ultimately rise to £6m and has immediately impressed with the club’s youth sides.
The England youth international joined Leicester in the summer after one season with the club’s sister side OH Leuven in Belgium and featured in this summer's Toulon Tournament.
The Dutch centre-back was handed his debut in the FA Cup at just 16 years old and will expect to get more first-team minutes under Jurgen Klopp, who is an outspoken admirer of Virgil van Dijk’s mentee.
After spells at Arsenal, Chelsea, Barcelona and Brentford, City snapped up the England youth international, who made his debut in the League Cup win over Burton last season.
The highly touted left-back travelled with United’s Champions League squad after an impressive season with the U18s and is set to challenge Luke Shaw in years to come.
His older brother Sean has stolen the plaudits thus far, but his younger brother is not far behind and was included on the club’s pre-season tour of China.
The Irishman impressed on loan in Australia last season before appearing in the Toulon Tournament.
The 18-year-old striker was awarded a new contract in the summer after scoring a goal every 170 minutes for the U23s last season before impressing for Ireland in the Toulon Tournament over the summer.
The young full-back seems destined to make a push for first-team minutes and can challenge Ryan Bertrand after the Saints opted to sell Matt Targett.
The Irish striker starred during Spurs’ pre-season and has since returned to goalscoring form with the U23s. Mauricio Pochettino is a keen admirer and a debut is not far away.
The Brazilian prodigy has thrilled at Fluminese and will link up with Watford's senior squad in January once he has turned 18.
The prodigious winger is regarded as one of England’s best prospects and has soared through the academy age groups, attracting a wealth of suitors from across Europe.
The defensive midfielder excited on the club's pre-season tour, having been called up to Wales' senior squad while still a 17-year-old.

“When you have an unsettled squad always it’s difficult and you lose time and then you need time to recover the time you lose,” the Argentinian said.

“That’s where we are. Maybe our performances are good but you need this extra, which is mental, connection, it’s energy to be all together, not to have different agendas in the squad.

“We need time again to build that togetherness that you need when you are competing at this level.

“We are in a period where it’s a bit tough for us but we keeping working to find a solution.

“When this type of thing happens it’s about staying clear and fresh and calm. We’re trying to find solutions and we only need time.”

That is no excuse for being unable to get past a side 71 places below them in the footballing pyramid as they rarely looked like scoring.

They had only four shots on target, despite ending the game with Eriksen, Moura, Dele Alli, Erik Lamela and Son Heung-min on the pitch.

“They were tough, they defended well,” Pochettino added. “Of course the difference of the level is there and if you analyse the circumstances, yes we need to create more and be more aggressive in the final third.”

It was one of Colchester’s most famous nights, even if they did not manage a shot on goal in the 90 minutes.

Goalkeeper Dean Gerken, who saved Eriksen’s spot-kick, and Lapslie were the heroes.

Boss John McGreal said: “It’s a great night under the lights, absolutely fantastic.

“It;s a fantastic night for the players and the club and even the staff.

“When you are coming up against the players of Tottenham’s calibre, sometimes on these type of nights you need a bit of luck.

“We have had a run around, we have got some tired legs in there. It’s a great occasion for us.”

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