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George: 'I apologise'

Posted on 30 December 2000  - 12:00

Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs) Football Club is located in North London. The club is also known as Spurs. Tottenham's home ground is White Hart Lane. The club motto is Audere est Facere (To dare is to do).

George Graham issued an apology to fans after Saturday’s desperate defeat at Ipswich Town.

We started poorly at Portman Road and were somewhat fortunate to only trail by Marcus Stewart’s early goal at half-time.

Boss George switched it around from 4-4-2 to 3-5-2 in the second half and although that brought an improved show possession wise, Town still bossed it and deserved further goals from Alun Armstrong and Jamie Clapham.

It was our worst display of the season and stretched our dismal away record in the Premiership to two draws and nine defeats in 11 games.

A despondent George conceded: “We started off second best and that’s the way we proceeded. We gave away a simple goal very early on and I can only apologise to fans who travelled up because that is easily the worst performance we have had this season.

“There was a lack of competitiveness, desire, just competing for the ball.

“We just seem to have run out of confidence and there are probably a number of reasons for that but even with the 11 we had out it should have been a much closer, tighter game. We just seemed to be second best all the time.”

George handed Gary Doherty (pictured) his full debut in a shake-up in attack that included the Irish youngster and Willem Korsten coming in for Chris Armstrong and Sergei Rebrov.

But we sorely missed Stephen Carr down the right flank and the lack of a left-back with both Ben Thatcher and Mauricio Taricco injured meant we were exposed on numerous occasions — in fact all three goals came from crosses.

George reflected: “Ipswich got down both flanks and unfortunately because we didn’t have a natural full-back, we had a central defender in Alton Thelwell on the right and a midfielder in Stephen Clemence on the left, they got down the sides at will.

“I changed it around at half time to a 3-5-2 to see if we could push players further up the pitch and have a go. We had a few shots at goal in the second but not that many. We didn’t have one in the first half and the second half wasn’t that much better.”

Listen to George's post-match press conference in full by clicking here

By Paul Miles at Portman Road