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Pochettino: Watford loss “a wake-up call”

No kidding.

Tottenham Hotspur v Fulham - Premier League Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

Well, that sucked. Tottenham Hotspur conceded two second half goals from set pieces and fell to Watford 2-1 at Vicarage Road on Sunday, their first defeat in four matches sending the Hornets to a perfect 4-0 on the season.

The result was a frustrating one for Spurs and for Tottenham supporters, in part because Spurs went ahead off of a Watford own-goal only to derp away two in a manner of minutes, but also because it comes on the heels of a huge win over Manchester United this past Monday.

Mauricio Pochettino addressed the media after the match and expressed his disappointment with the result and his teams’ performance.

“After four years in charge of Tottenham it can happen. It is so painful because after Man Utd I was so disappointed with the performance. It is so painful to concede two goals like this, it is so painful because the first half looked like a friendly game. I am very disappointed, very disappointed because if you want to be a contender, first I am the first person guilty of everything, but it is so difficult to understand because I thought we controlled the game in the first 45 minutes.

“To play football, to compete, it looks an easy game because we dominate the ball, we didn’t concede because Watford were poor in the first 45 minutes. We scored, but when you score you keep going and play in the same way and then we started to change and play long ball.

“We conceded two goals that if you want to be a contender you cannot concede. It is the beginning and it is a very good wake-up call for everyone and to listen more because people talk about the perception and not the reality. This is good to compare, some people talk about perceptions but the reality was on the pitch.

“The reality is if you want to be a contender today we should win and win easy because everything was ready to win the game. That is very painful but I am not upset. I was more upset after Monday.”

Spurs now have to stew for two weeks before their next league match — this coming weekend is the international break, with Tottenham returning to Wembley on the 15th to play an in-form and undefeated Liverpool. It’s not the way you’d want to go into a (supposed) break from football, but it might give Pochettino a little extra time and motivation to work on how to stop Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane.