Search

Sherwood: Arsenal didn’t outnumber us in midfield

21:36 04 January 2014

Tim Sherwood. Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Tim Sherwood. Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

2014 Getty Images

Tim Sherwood defended his tactics after watching his Tottenham team suffer a damaging 2-0 FA Cup third round defeat to bitter north London rivals Arsenal.

Sherwood suffered his first loss since being appointed as permanent manager thanks to goals from Santi Cazorla and Tomas Rosicky at the Emirates Stadium.

Tottenham rarely looked like making it into the hat for the fourth round of the competition.

Arsenal dominated large parts of the first half and the Spurs defence were always vulnerable to the pace of Theo Walcott and the impressive Serge Gnabry.

Sherwood deployed a 4-4-2 system while Arsenal lined up 4-2-3-1, allowing Arsene Wenger’s side to pack out the midfield and retain possession.

Sherwood is a firm believer in the 4-4-2 formation, though and he says he only changed it in the second half because midfielder Nacer Chadli had to come on for injured striker Roberto Soldado.

When asked whether he thought he should have played more midfielders to match Wenger’s line-up, the Tottenham boss said: “No.

“They outnumbered us in the middle of the park but we outnumbered them out wide. They can’t have it all ways. I think we were fine.

“We didn’t lose the game because we were outnumbered in the middle of the pitch.

“A lot is made of systems - 4-4-2, 4-3-3 or whatever you want to call it... It’s about passing the ball to your own team and keeping hold of it because when you lose the ball you are always going to be out of shape - otherwise you are going to be a rigid, boring team.

“It’s about funnelling back in, shuffling across. I don’t think we were overrun in the middle of the park. I think they did all right.”

Sherwood’s main goal may be to get Tottenham into the Champions League, but the Spurs boss knows this FA Cup defeat will be a blow to morale, particularly after the high that came with the New Year’s Day victory at Manchester United.

Sherwood, who lost three of his five north London derbies as a player, was not too downhearted about the third round defeat, however.

The 44-year-old says his team were always going to be up against it because of a crippling injury list that forced him to hand 19-year-old Nabil Bentaleb his full debut.

“I am disappointed with the result, but we didn’t disgrace ourselves,” the former Blackburn midfielder said.

“We showed we belong on the same field and in the same company as Arsenal.

“It has been six games in 17 days for us and we probably have the smallest squad in the league with the amount of injuries we have had.

“We were fatigued. A little bit of sharpness was missing but it could have gone either way.

“They showed great character and I am proud of them.”

Cazorla put Arsenal ahead in the first half after the hosts took advantage of some slack marking by Vlad Chiriches and Kyle Walker.

The second goal came as a result of a huge error by Danny Rose.

The left-back, who scored the winner against Arsenal on his debut four years ago, dallied on the ball when he was the last man stationed on the halfway line.

Rosicky won possession and ran 40 yards before lifting the ball over the advancing Hugo Lloris.

Sherwood backed Rose to recover from the mistake as he said: “Danny is a good lad. He doesn’t shirk any responsibility.

“I will never berate anyone for making a mistake. But he has got the character, he has got big enough shoulders to move on and I am sure he will be ready to play on Saturday.”

Related articles

0 comments

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino has announced he has verbally agreed a two-year contract extension at Tottenham, extending his stay at White Hart Lane until 2021.

Dele Alli (right) appeared to punch West Bromwich Albion's Claudio Yacob during Monday's 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane and has been banned for three games

Dele Alli will continue to take part in training until the end of the season, even though he cannot play for Tottenham, to maintain his fitness ahead of this summer’s Euro 2016 Championship.

Yesterday, 17:30
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe  (back row, centre) visited Haringey Police Boxing Club on Tottenham High Road. Pic: Dieter Perry

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe visited Haringey Police Boxing Club to meet a contingent of fighters who are hoping to compete in the Haringey Box Cup in June.

Yesterday, 17:14
Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla of Arsenal (Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images)

Although they spurned the chance to win the league title, Arsenal Under-21s still have a chance to reach the top tier of second-string football via the play-offs.

Yesterday, 13:15
James Harris in action for Middlesex

Middlesex seamer James Harris feels squad rotation is essential if the club are to successfully negotiate a punishing schedule during the coming weeks.

Yesterday, 12:00
Heung-Min Son was only introduced in the 85th minute as Tottenham dropped two crucial points at home against West Bromwich Albion at White Hart Lane on Monday

Tottenham blogger George Lacey feels that, while Spurs have exceeded all expectations this season, the lack of a plan B was evident in Monday’s costly draw against West Bromwich Albion.

Yesterday, 07:30
Gower All-Stars are aiming to win four trophies this season

Gower Allstars have a quadruple in their sights after another season of huge progress.

Wed, 17:00
Hendon's Terry Gilbride scored two tries in Saturday's cup final. Pic: Paolo Minoli

Hendon’s successful end to the season continued at the weekend as they secured two trophies.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read Hampstead & Highgate sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe