Football news live: Tottenham bid to go back top, pressure eases on Manchester United boss Ten Hag, Arsenal still unbeaten
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Football news live: Tottenham bid to go back top, pressure eases on Manchester United boss Ten Hag, Arsenal still unbeaten

Oct 23, 2023

Poch demands

Mauricio Pochettino called on his players to make better decisions to see games out after they let slip a two-goal lead in the final 13 minutes to draw 2-2 with Arsenal on Saturday.

Chelsea had been comfortably the better side against last season’s Premier League runners-up when goalkeeper Robert Sanchez gave the ball to Declan Rice with a careless pass in the 77th minute, allowing the Arsenal midfielder to cut the deficit to 2-1.

Substitute Leandro Trossard netted with six minutes to play to snatch the visitors a point, robbing Pochettino’s side of a third straight league win.

Earlier Cole Palmer, from the penalty spot, and Mykhailo Mudryk had handed Chelsea a commanding lead for which they were good value entering the closing stages.

Their recent good run has come despite still having a number of players out injured, including captain Reece James who was fit only for a late cameo at Stamford Bridge, and fellow England full-back Ben Chilwell.

Afterwards, the manager challenged his team to uphold the standards they had shown in stymying Arsenal’s threat for much of the game if they are to continue their recent uptick in form.

“We need to take the positives from 77 minutes,” said Pochettino. “If not, you need to ask (every) other coach how they concede two goals. That is football.

“We were facing a team that last season were close to winning the league, then they invested to make stronger their squad.

“We’re at the beginning of our project, that’s why we need to take positive things because I think we played really well. After 77 minutes we were better and didn’t concede too many chances. That is credit to the team.

“You need to remember, when you see Arsenal’s squad, if you see 25 available players you still pick the same team that Arteta picked today. But for us, too many circumstances where we don’t have the possibility to have all the squad available. That’s another thing you need to put in your analysis.

“One criticism of us was maybe at 2-0 on 77 minutes to take better decisions in these situations, to not concede in the way that we conceded. That gave confidence and belief to the opponents to say ‘come on, go, it’s possible’.”


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