Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has admitted that Spurs ‘cannot compare’ to elite teams after Manchester City toppled his side 1-0 at Wembley.
An early strike from Riyad Mahrez did the damage as Spurs put in a brave performance against the champions, but it was to no avail as Pochettino cut a frustrated figure on the touchline. He was proud of the efforts his players put in, but admitted they need to stop conceding early goals.
“You can prepare everything and you work and some accident can happen in football and you can concede. Against Barcelona it is similar. You cannot control these situations. What’s important is that the team has the mentality to fight and go forward. The quality today was good but not enough to win.”
Spurs worked hard against City and Pochettino was pleased with his side's. Many of the headlines however were stolen by the mess the pitch was left in by the NFL game over the weekend. The ball appeared to take a bobble in the lead up to Erik Lamela's vital miss and Pochettino admitted he was frustrated by the playing surface.
“The circumstances of the pitch was the same for both sides. I think it was a very competitive game. We conceded a goal so early that was so cheap and football punishes you. I am so proud though. The effort was fantastic. Last season was difficult to compete with City, the gap was massive. Today was competitive.”
Pochettino will have little time to dwell on the City loss as Spurs travel to the London Stadium to take on West Ham on Wednesday night.