'This could be a massive point' - Wanyama, Dembele, Dier and others react to City draw
22 January 2017|Tottenham Hotspur
A lot was said about the character of the team as we came back from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 at Manchester City on Saturday, but ‘belief’ was the key word among the players as Victor Wanyama, Mousa Dembele, Heung-Min Son, Eric Dier and Hugo Lloris gave us their post-match reactions.
Son was the one who popped up with the equalising goal after Dele Alli had got us back into the game with a header at the Etihad Stadium. That came after quickfire goals from Leroy Sane and Kevin De Bruyne put City well and truly in command.
There were several other talking points – Hugo’s disappointment with both goals, Raheem Sterling’s penalty appeal while under pressure from Kyle Walker and Victor Wanyama heroically filling in as a makeshift centre-half at a key stage of the game after Toby Alderweireld was forced off.
Here’s what was said after a dramatic clash at the top of the table…
View on the result
“It wasn’t our best game and it’s a tough place to come but at the end, we’re happy with the point. Today shows how great everyone can believe, the team spirit is so good here. We kept fighting even though we weren’t playing to our level. We showed we can dig deep and get something out of a situation like that. At the end of the season, this could be a massive point.”
On playing at centre-half
“They have a good team and when Toby was injured, I thought maybe we’d put in another centre-back but I saw Harry Winks coming on and I had to go back there. That’s no problem though, I just needed to concentrate because City are sharp in front of goal.”
On the feeling after Son’s equaliser
“It felt nice, we believed then that we could even get another goal. We wanted to keep going. We’re a fit team and we could go for another 40 minutes! We knew we could create something. At the end, it’s a point, we’re glad to take it and we’ll keep going. We’ll go back, train hard and try to get back to our level and to winning ways.”
On the need to dig deep
“In the first half we were very disappointing in our style of play, we didn’t play as confidently as we usually do and like we’ve done in the previous games. At half-time, the manager wasn’t happy and told us to get out there and play our own game. To be honest the second half wasn’t that great either but one thing we have shown is that we can bounce back in games. It’s a very important point for us and we’re all very happy with that point because everyone could see that City were on top of us.”
On City’s threats
“They played well. I spoke with Vince (Vincent Kompany, Mousa’s Belgian international team-mate) and he said it was one of their best games. They played well and we didn’t play our game so then you can expect it to be tough. We hung in there though and as I said, it was a very important point – we’ll take it with both hands.”
On the character shown
“Even at 2-0 down I still believed we could even win, certainly get back to a point and I think everyone was of the same mindset.”
Talk us through your goal…
“The combination was good between Christian (Eriksen) and Harry (Kane), I thought it might be off-side because Otamendi had his hands up but I shot and saw there was no off-side so I was really happy. When I came on, I wanted to help my team-mates.”
How do you feel after that?
“We had to dig deep and it’s mixed emotions really. We deserved to be 2-0 down. We were very poor and the fact we brought it back to 2-2 is fantastic. That shows the character we have, we’ll fight to the very end of every game. The thing is, we can’t feel too happy about getting it back to 2-2 because of the way we started the game.”
Do you think it was a subdued reaction from us after the game?
“That shows how far we’ve come. We’re extremely disappointed that we’ve come to Manchester City and drawn the game. That proves how far we’ve come as a group and that’s the attitude we have to have. We want to win every game and we’re angry if we don’t.”
Overall thoughts on the outcome
“City probably played their best game of the season. In the first half, we started three at the back, we changed to four, then Toby went off injured and Kevin was already out. It showed the mentality of this team. I’m pleased for that. I’m sure a few years ago we might have conceded a bad defeat in a situation like that.”