Spurs boss Christian Stellini on Everton draw: “We rushed, we were frantic”
After his first match since taking over from Antonio Conte, Stellini said that Tottenham Hotspur need to learn how to control games to avoid late goals.
Christian Stellini took charge of Tottenham Hotspur for the first time since the dismissal of Antonio Conte, overseeing a 1-1 draw with Everton.
Tottenham took the lead through a Harry Kane penalty but were undone by a late Michael Keane equaliser after both sides had had a man sent off.
Stellini had won all four of the four games he had previously had in caretaker charge of Spurs, but was unable to extend that good record at Goodison Park. Speaking after the game, Stellini said that his team needed to improve in possession to see out tight games.
“We didn’t lead the game with the ball after the red card,” he said. “We had the chance to control the game better than we did. You have to move the ball side to side.”
“Sometimes we rushed, we were frantic. We need to improve in this aspect. It’s a long process and we don’t improve in one night.”
He added that the Goodison Park atmosphere played a part in the dramatic late equaliser. Everton have improved since the arrival of Shaun Dyche but remain in the thick of the Premier League relegation battle.
“When you have a team like this in their stadium never it is easy,” Stellini said. “We were struggling to find the right way to speak to the players and keep them calm. You have to be calm and lucid.”
Stellini, along with fellow Spurs coach Ryan Mason, was placed in temporary charge until the end of the season after Conte was sacked during the international break. Performances, and Conte’s apparent interest in the club, had been waning but it was an explosive post-match interview that sealed his fate.
After Tottenham conceded twice late on to draw against relegation-threatened Southampton in March, Conte tore into his players and questioned their character.
He said: “They don’t play for something important yeah. They don’t want to play under pressure, they don’t want to play under stress. It is easy in this way. Tottenham’s story is this.”
One game into his short-term spell in charge, Stellini may already be getting a sense of his predecessor’s struggles.