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    Southampton, 0-2 Spurs. Pochettino returns to haunt old club.

    By Dominic Rust 

    Southampton’s woes continued as Tottenham Hotspur won 2-0 on the South Coast. Harry Kane scored his 100th goal, five minutes before half-time. Minutes later, Dele All doubled the scoring as he tucked home Kyle Walker’s cross past Paulo Gazzaniga.

    Mauricio Pochettino returned to St Mary’s where his story started in English football and he told BBC Sport that he was pleased with the victory: “"I am very happy because it was a very difficult game. Southampton are a very good team and the first 20 minutes were difficult but after that we settled and managed the game and deserved our victory.”

    Since taking over from Tim Sherwood, the Argentinian has developed Spurs into a youthful and vibrant team. Kane, Alli, Lamela, and summer signing Son Heung- Min all add weight to Pochettino’s detailed philosophy.

    Ronald Koeman said prior to this weekend’s game that the Christmas and New Year period is crucial for Southampton. They currently lie seven points clear of the relegation zone and the Saints will need to improve quickly if they are to improve relegation.

    Erik Lamela broke through the Southampton midfield and feed Ali who found Kane. Then the 22-year-old did the rest. He darted past Virgil Van Dijk and scored his 47th goal for the club. Southampton players started to drop after Spurs opened the scoring and Alli capitalised on that. The precocious talent doubled Spurs’ lead as he converted a Kyle Walker cross.

    Koeman said that his side’s ability to convert chances has been a problem in recent weeks. Sadio Mane epitomised that as spurned a couple of opportunities in the opening 20 minutes. The Senegalese striker had a low shot saved by Lloris and then Toby Alderweireld blocked his goal bound attempt.
    James Ward-Prowse tested the Spurs keeper in the remaining minutes but it was too late as the visitors secured all three points.

    Koeman said in his pre-match press conference that his side need to be more ruthless: “One of my criticisms this season is that we are too nice people. Until the first goal, Southampton was the better team but they showed us what is a 'killing mentality'. They won the battles and second balls and were more clever in one-on-one situations.

    "It might also be about confidence, but we need to be more clinical. If you get three or four good chances, you have to score. We maybe need to change players because they are not responding to our strategy, “the Dutchman told BBC Sport.

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    Item Reviewed: Southampton, 0-2 Spurs. Pochettino returns to haunt old club. Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Dominic Rust
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