Wily Wolves boss gives Po­chet­tino tac­ti­cal les­son

Irish Examiner - Sport - - SOCCER -

De­feat to Wolves, fol­lowed by Liver­pool’s thrash­ing of Arse­nal on Satur­day evening, means Spurs ti­tle chal­lenge is ef­fec­tively over. Bridg­ing a nine-point gap would be ex­cep­tional, but with the Reds ram­pant it would take a team of tremen­dous strength and squad depth to do that. Tot­ten­ham don’t have that depth – a quick look at the subs’ bench on Satur­day showed the paucity of gamechang­ing play­ers at Po­chet­tino’s dis­posal at the mo­ment. A rash of in­juries to key play­ers has not helped, with first-choice play­ers Mousa Dem­bele, Eric Dier and Jan Ver­tonghen all miss­ing the fes­tive pe­riod. The ob­vi­ous move would be to sign re­in­force­ments in Jan­uary, but Daniel Levy has a near-bil­lion Euro sta­dium to pay for and has said any sign­ings must be funded by sales of un­wanted play­ers, al­ways an in­vid­i­ous task in the Jan­uary trans­fer win­dow. If Tot­ten­ham have to stick with the same squad, their chances of sil­ver­ware will di­min­ish week by week as the fix­tures pile up – with an­other three in the next seven days.

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