Tottenham pundit ‘delighted’ Sporting exposed Antonio Conte problem and slams unreliable new signing

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Richarlison, Son Heung-min, Emerson Royal, September 2022 Credit: PA Images
Richarlison, Son Heung-min, Emerson Royal, September 2022 Credit: PA Images

Jason Cundy admitted that Tottenham looked ‘Spursy’ in their 2-0 defeat to Sporting and slammed Richarlison as a questionable signing.

The north London side suffered their first defeat of the campaign on Tuesday in the Champions League. Both sides had chances, but neither could seemingly break the deadlock.

That was until hosts Sporting hit Tottenham with a cruel double blow at the death. Paulinho netted in the 90th minute, before Arthur Gomes added a second deep into stoppage time.

Before their first defeat, Tottenham had ground out five wins and two draws under manager Antonio Conte.

For ex-Spurs man Cundy, though, his former club needed the loss to prove there are still problems in the team.

“It wasn’t brilliant, but I don’t know how Spurs have lost that game,” Cundy said in his post-match assessment.

“Trust me, I was delighted as soon as Spurs conceded because there was a little bit of Spursy-ness about that, there was.

“You’ve had a good start to the season result-wise, but performance-wise? Unconvincing. I’ve never come away from a Spurs game and gone ‘wow, they’re going to cause problems.’

“You’ve stumbled and tripped to results. You’ve not been brilliant in a lot of games that I’ve seen, but you’ve managed to get results. That says something about the team.”

Cundy said that Chelsea should have beat Spurs in their eventual 2-2 draw. He added that a point should have been the least Tottenham got from their trip to Portugal.

Jason Cundy slams Richarlison at Tottenham

And the pundit then focused his criticism on summer signing Richarlison.

The former Everton striker, whose arrival could cost a club-record £60million, scored his first two Tottenham goals in the 2-0 win over Marseille last week.

However, Cundy has doubts as to whether the Brazil international is the right man to score a season’s worth of goals.

“Spurs had half chances. Richarlison is unconvincing,” the pundit added in his talkSPORT verdict. “I’m not convinced that he’s the man to get goals. He might have performances, but I’m not convinced that he’ll get goals.

“He’s not 15-20 goals a season man, he’s not. Tonight, we saw that. We saw that he’s not the man who will dig you out of a situation.

“Harry Kane is the man. He’s still the man. If Kane doesn’t score in games that are tight, where are the goals?”

Tottenham boss Conte admitted that the game “was in the balance” in the second half.

Meanwhile, Cundy’s fellow pundits Glenn Hoddle, Jermaine Jenas and Peter Crouch warned Son Heung-min – who has yet to score this season after scooping a share of the Premier League’s Golden Boot last term – could soon be dropped.

Jenas added that Spurs have to “take a good long look at themselves” for their “sloppy performances”.

Spurs looking to bounce back

The fact that Tottenham had got through games unbeaten and with points is a sign of their never-say-die attitude.

And with Conte, a Premier League winner with Chelsea, looking to take Spurs to similar heights, such resilience is a vital trait.

But, there comes a time when that doesn’t work and defeat hits hard. Tuesday’s game was that moment.

Tottenham may have shown resilience and grit to remain unbeaten so far, but they have not been clinical enough.

And that proved their downfall in Tuesday’s defeat. Spurs fans will hope the loss can prove a turning point in their efforts to get points back on the board in their return to action.

Tottenham face Leicester on Saturday in the Premier League.

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