Stellini insists it’s ‘not only’ Spurs who’ve been upset in the FA Cup; still believes in successful season

Joe Williams
Tottenham assistant Cristian Stellini watches his side

Cristian Stellini thinks there is too much talk at Spurs “about a trophy and less about the mentality” after they were dumped out the FA Cup by Sheffield United in midweek.

Tottenham put in a terrible performance as they lost 1-0 to Championship side Sheff Utd on Wednesday night with Iliman Ndiaye scoring the only goal of the game late on.

Spurs fans were devastated by the result which could mean Tottenham end up with no silverware again this season with their best chance now in the Champions League.

Many will point to the heavy rotation of the Spurs team but the Blades made eight changes of their own ahead of a big Championship match against Blackburn Rovers at the weekend.

Asked whether it will be a success if they finish in the top four with the fans wanting a trophy, Stellini told reporters: “Everyone wants this, only the fans can expect every year, only the fans need to be happy with the team and the way the team plays, but we have to show on the pitch, this is our job, this is the difference between us and the fans.

“We have to react immediately because that game was not good enough and we don’t want to be like this again and we don’t want to show this to the fans again. We have to create a good mentality, when we speak sometimes, I sometimes feel we speak too much about a trophy and less about the mentality.

“We have to work on this aspect every day and fight against ourselves, because when you approach a game like this you have to fight against you if you think the game will be easy in the FA Cup if you play away. Eight teams play in the quarter-finals and four are not in the Premier League, so it’s not only us.”

On why they lacked energy against Sheffield United, Stellini added: “It is not about the team selection, it is about the approach, the mentality and the energy you put into the game. We had to be better in that time and we had to be better before the game, not after. If you feel hunger after the game, it is too late.

“You have to feel hunger before the game and not after. This is the point. I don’t think this happened because we select this type of squad, but because we didn’t approach well.”

When asked if he and Conte can still achieve a successful season, Stellini replied: “Yes, you have to believe in that, you have to believe in yourself, you can change this season in every moment like we did last season.”

On when Conte will be back in charge, Stellini continued: “I said he would come back this week and straight after the match against Wolves he will be in London and will be in charge again from Sunday.”

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