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Antonio Conte’s telling post-match comment as Man City uncovers Tottenham’s greatest problem

Antonio Conte’s telling post-match comment as Man City uncovers Tottenham’s greatest problem

Tottenham entered halftime with a 2-0 lead at the Etihad Stadium. Everything appeared to be going well for Spurs.

Antonio Conte’s men needed to remain solid and try to keep their opponents scoreless for as long as possible in the second half, as they anticipated a Man City onslaught.

If they had accomplished this, the reigning Premier League champions would have been extremely frustrated, and Spurs’ chances of leaving Manchester with all three points would have increased.

Instead, Julian Alvarez cut the deficit in half six minutes into the second half, followed by Erling Haaland two minutes later.

Ivan Perisic’s low effort was deflected onto the post by Rico Lewis, before City went up the other end of the field and took the lead for the first time in the game through Riyad Mahrez. After that, there was no way back for the Lilywhites, as the in-form Algerian completed the victory with a classy finish in the final minutes.

Another game of two halves for Spurs, but this time it was an impressive first half followed by a poor second half, with individual errors proving to be incredibly costly to their chances. Perisic endured a nightmare 69 minutes on the field and was repeatedly embarrassed by Mahrez in the second half.

Mahrez saw the ex-Leicester City player move past him with ease for Alvarez’s first goal, and then used his strength to keep the Croat at bay for Haaland’s second as he headed the ball across the goal for a simple finish. It got worse for the summer signing as he raced out of position to cut off Rodri’s searching pass to the winger, only to make a mistake that gave the 31-year-old the ball and the chance to run at Davies and score past Lloris.

Clement Lenglet’s inability to control Ederson’s long punt forward allowed Mahrez to nip in and finish stylishly past Lloris for City’s fourth goal of the evening. The goalkeeper didn’t exactly cover himself in glory for two of City’s goals, flapping at the ball when it came his way for the first and then being beaten by Mahrez’s low drive at his near post for the third.

In his post-match press conference, Conte discussed the errors that are currently costing his team dearly. Specifically mentioning that “you don’t buy experience – well you can buy experience…” when mentioning that a more experienced team in this type of game wouldn’t have lost.

“Yeah but you know we are really disappointed because many times, you have try to justify the goals that we are conceding,” he said. “For sure this is a period we are not so lucky because we are making many, many mistakes, many mistakes, but football is this.

“Sometimes you have a positive performance. Sometimes you are in situations that are not so positive but we have to continue to work and believe in ourselves. As I said in the past, this type of game with more experience you never, never lose. You don’t buy experience, (laughs) well you can buy experience. You can buy it, but you know very well that we have to buy experience step by step, year by year.

“For this reason when I speak and I tell you we have just started the process to try to become competitive, it means that we are also working under this aspect because a team with experience never concedes four goals.”

Spurs’ five-point deficit to fourth-place Newcastle United, despite having played a game more, is largely attributable to individual errors, which are currently proving fatal.

Rodtancur Bentancur is a classy operator in the middle of the field, but Spurs lack the defensive quality that would enable them to challenge for the league’s top spot.

Spurs’ issues at the wing-back positions are well-documented, but they also need to strengthen their central defense and acquire players of the same caliber as World Cup champion Cristian Romero.

Until they do so, they will not make the significant league advancements they desire, and their trophy drought will continue.

Fabio Paratici faces a tremendous challenge in attempting to bring Tottenham up to the required level. The loss at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday night only emphasized the need for Tottenham to increase their transfer activity.

Antonio Conte’s telling post-match comment as Man City uncovers Tottenham’s greatest problem

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