Bent tells unhappy Spurs fans: I feel your pain

DARREN Bent said he could understand Tottenham fans frustration after the Lilywhites sub-standard performance in their 2-1 loss to Aston Villa at the Lane on Monday night. Tottenham went into the match desperate to turn around a horror start to the seaso

DARREN Bent said he could understand Tottenham fans' frustration after the Lilywhites sub-standard performance in their 2-1 loss to Aston Villa at the Lane on Monday night.

Tottenham went into the match desperate to turn around a horror start to the season, which has seen them bag just one point from their first three games, leaving them slumped at the foot of the table.

But on Monday there was barely time for the fans to be seated before Villa scored in the fourth minute and then again in the 54th, before Bent threw them a lifeline when he netted in the final minutes.

The demoralising loss is the Lilywhites' worst start to a season since 1974-75 when they started their campaign with four straight losses.

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"I think we have set our expectations so high down here which is why people are getting on our backs so early," Bent told Ham&High Sports after Monday's disheartening performance. "We know we need to be better, to start winning games and start performing.

"We kept the ball and passed it around but once again it got us nowhere, really.

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"It happened to us last season and there was a lot of expectation this time. Now it is just 'come on Wigan' on Sunday."

While Bent, who made 36 appearances for Tottenham last season, believes that the current squad will work well together, he says it must happen immediately.

"We definitely need to get it sorted sooner rather than later. If we carry on like we are then we are going to be in big trouble.

"The main thing is we turn it around [against Wisla Krakow in the UEFA Cup] tonight (Thursday) and then take that into the game on Sunday.

"You don't want to be losing and then have a week's break and all be thinking about it. At least we've got a game straight away to pull it around and we know we need to do that.

"People are expecting results now and we are under no illusions that we know we need to do that."

Last season's poor start - a win and three losses in their first four games - initiated the departure of former boss Martin Jol, and Jaunde Ramos was reported to be furious with Spur's performance on Monday.

"I am always angry at the end of games like this with the players and myself as well," said Ramos.

Ramos's new-look squad included Vedran Corluka and Bent's strike partner Roman Pavlyuchenko, both making their Tottenham debuts. And Bent believes his partnership with the prolific-scoring Russian is vital to Spurs' season.

"It's always nice to have a strike partner and everyone saw what he was capable of in the European Cup," said Bent of Pavlyuchenko, who scored both goals in Russia's 2-1 victory over England in the European qualifiers.

"Hopefully, he can bring his passion and his energy for the game to Tottenham.

"He is a willing runner as well so I don't have to do all of the running and he is a strong guy up front. He just takes a load off my back really."

And 24-year-old Bent, who bagged nine goals in all competitions and six in the league in his first season at Tottenham last year, is confident that Pavlyuchenko and the other new faces will quickly gel.

"He [Pavlyuchenko] can't speak English but football is a universal language so he knows what he's doing and he's a top, top player so it makes it easier," said Bent.

"We have only had a few days [together] because he was away in the international break but we have plenty of time now - hopefully we can work on the partnership.

"There's no reason why we can't. We have only trained together twice so obviously it is early days but I am sure we'll get it right.

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