In pictures: Tottenham v Man City
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Tottenham failed to build on their recent victory over Manchester City after they lost to Pacos de Ferreira in their UEFA Conference League showdown on Tuesday evening. Nuno Espirito Santo put out a weakened side for the showdown. But that gamble backfired, with Spurs slipping to a disappointing defeat.
At the weekend, Tottenham sprung a Premier League surprise.
The north London giants beat Manchester City 1-0 in their opening fixture, with Son Heung-Min scoring the only goal of the game.
On Thursday night, it was Tottenham’s time to grace the European scene – participating in the UEFA Conference League.
Yet they slipped to a disappointing defeat in Portugal, with Lucas da Silva de Jesus scoring the only goal of the game.
It was a frustrating night for Tottenham, who will now have plenty of work to do in the second leg on August 26.
And Express Sport will now take a look at five players who need dropping in the wake of the disappointing defeat.
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When Tottenham beat Manchester City on Sunday, Japhet Tanganga was one of the best players on the pitch.
The right-back managed to win his individual battle with Raheem Sterling, producing a commanding display as his side claimed all three points.
But Cameron Carter-Vickers’ display on Thursday night was contrasting.
The 23-year-old is facing a big season ahead, having spent the last few years out on loan.
And he did nothing to show he should be at Tottenham, playing Silva onside for the winning goal on a chastening night.
Tottenham signed Matt Doherty from Wolves in last summer’s transfer window.
But the right-back has struggled for consistency since moving and was similarly poor during their European defeat.
Doherty has regressed at Tottenham since his transfer and, based on this evidence, won’t be turning out for the first-team on a regular basis.
Brighter days will likely lie ahead but the former Wolves star has plenty of improving to do.
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For a while now, Tottenham have been waiting for the real Harry Winks to stand up.
The England international was a regular under Mauricio Pochettino, with his early performances even seeing him linked with Manchester United.
But Winks has toiled over the last couple of years and put in a drab display as Tottenham succumbed to defeat on Thursday night.
He lost the ball in the build-up to Pacos’ only goal of the night.
And with Tottenham well-stocked for midfield options at present, he isn’t expected to be a consistent figure after this.
Giovani Lo Celso
Giovani Lo Celso has talent.
But, when it comes to playmakers, the Argentina international pales in comparison to the best the Premier League has to offer.
Despite winning the Copa America recently, he was poor as Tottenham missed the chance to secure a second win on the spin.
Lo Celso was too loose in possession, often giving the ball away.
And it’s clear he has much improving to do if he’s to ever justify the club’s decision to sign him permanently in January 2020.
For the fixture in Portugal, Nuno decided to unleash Nile John for the very first time.
However, the teenager struggled to make an impact – in stark contrast to Son’s fantastic performance in the No 9 role against City on Sunday.
It was no surprise to see his number come up at the interval, having failed to grab the game by the scruff of the neck.
Better days again lie ahead but John won’t be starting many matches this season if this match is anything to go by.
Speaking after the match, Nuno admitted the defeat would harm Tottenham’s mood.
He said: “Of course it impacts a lot.
“Nobody likes to lose a game or not play good. The feel-good factor disappears.
“This is football. It is up and down but they have to bounce back. This is what we are going to do.
“We are going to work tomorrow to prepare for the next one. The good part of football is that it gives you the chance immediately and we have a chance on Sunday.”
Nuno also admitted the performance wasn’t good enough.
“Not good, not good,” he said.
“First half we lost too many passes – and the goal came from that, we were imbalanced. But not a good performance, honestly not a good performance.
“Of course, players coming back, players that require minutes, the decision was basically trying to give them minutes.
“We need players to get minutes in their legs and increase their levels of fitness. But of course things take some time, it was not so good.
“But individually some players put in good situations, did the things that we want to build on.
“But as a team we were not organised enough and did not play the ball fast enough to break a team that was really compact and did not allow many spaces.”
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