Tottenham Hotspur manager Jose Mourinho admonished his players after losing another lead, this time to Wolverhampton Wanderers in Sunday’s 1-1 draw, to continue a poor run that has seen them slip from first to fifth in the Premier League.
“It is disappointing, of course,” Mourinho said, acknowledging frustration after Tanguy Ndombele’s goal after 57 seconds was cancelled out by Romain Saiss’ late header.
“We had control of the game. But we had 89 minutes to score more goals, and we didn’t. And it was not just about not scoring goals, it was also about not being dangerous, not being ambitious, and for me that’s the problem.”
Spurs sat back at Molineux in the second half, giving Wolves space and confidence to press for an equaliser as happened at Crystal Palace in another 1-1 away draw earlier this month.
They have dropped more points in the last 10 minutes of matches this season than any other Premier League side. The draw at Wolves left Spurs in fifth place and six points behind leaders Liverpool when a win would have put them third.
“Of course tomorrow we are going to have a similar meeting as other meetings we have had,” a weary Mourinho said.
“And of course after tomorrow, we are going to practice the same thing we have practiced after similar situations … Of course, it (conceding late goals) is a concern, but I repeat, it is more of a concern the fact that we score early goals and we don’t do matches.”
Mourinho said Gareth Bale, who is on loan from Real Madrid and was substituted with a calf injury in a mid-week League Cup win at Stoke, would probably be out for a few weeks.
In contrast to Spurs, Wolves have been comeback specialists under Portuguese manager Nuno Espirito Santo, who once played as a goalkeeper under his countryman when Mourinho managed Porto.
“It has not only to do with fitness, it has to do with belief, with the spirit of the boys,” he said of Wolves’ knack of late revivals, praising them for not giving up against Spurs. “The effort was huge … It required a big heart.”
Without Jimenez, the Wolves boss said, “it’s up to the team to find solutions to find things that usually Raul gave us. Everyone has to step in and contribute.”