Jose Mourinho says the hurt Tottenham suffered in squandering a 3-0 lead against West Ham has changed the way they are playing.
Spurs briefly went top of the Premier League after they beat West Brom 1-0 at the Hawthorns on Sunday thanks to Harry Kane’s late goal – his 150th in the Premier League.
The manner of the victory was a far cry from the start of the season where they were free-scoring and cutting teams open at will.
One of those were the Hammers as they led 3-0 after just 16 minutes, only for a late capitulation which saw them concede three goals in the final eight minutes to draw 3-3.
— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) November 9, 2020
Mourinho’s men have not been as expansive since, grinding out a 1-0 win over Burnley and an edgy 2-1 success against Brighton, which was followed by the late victory over the Baggies.
Asked about the impact of the West Ham game, Mourinho said: “I said that we were speaking a lot about it and working a lot about that situation.
“I am not going to say we are not going to lose matches or lose points in the last minutes, it can happen to anyone.
“We felt the pain against West Ham and since then strategically the team is behaving in a different way.
“The two clean sheets at Burnley and at West Brom showed the lesson – a team in the last five minutes that was very solid, it looked like the pain made a positive effort and the team improved after that.
“The reality is that the players understand the need of being a team in every moment of every game. This game has some similarities to the one at Burnley where the clean sheet kept us in the running for the three points.
“Then when you score a goal it’s time to be compact and fight for that victory.
“So important for us because we are compensating away for the points we lost at home earlier in the season.”
Kane’s late goal broke the hearts of West Brom, who are still searching for a first win since their promotion back to the top flight.
“I felt like we deserved more. We’re gutted because we played well. So to concede right at the end of this game was horrible, but also we’re happy with the performance.”
Conor Gallagher assesses this afternoon’s action at The Hawthorns 💬
— West Bromwich Albion (@WBA) November 8, 2020
They tested Spurs, though, and midfielder Conor Gallagher says his struggling side have to take confidence from their performance.
“I felt like we deserved more,” he said on the club’s official website.
“We’re gutted because we played well. So to concede right at the end of this game was horrible, but also we’re happy with the performance.
“Spurs are a top team so for them to come here and us to play as well as we did is great. I feel like we could’ve got more from the game but I think the boys can take a lot from that game and into our next fixtures.”