Hugo Lloris has called Tottenham’s surprising exit from the Europa League after a 3-0 loss at Dinamo Zagreb was a “disgrace” and reflected deeper problems at the club.
Spurs were favorites to reach the quarter-finals after securing a 2-0 lead in the first leg, but Zagreb reacted with a sensational hat-trick by Mislav Orsic for a 3-2 aggregate victory.
“I think we are all more than disappointed, it’s just a shame,” said the Tottenham captain. told BT Sport. “I just hope that everyone in the locker room feels responsible for this situation because it is a shame … The taste of defeat is more than painful and we are all responsible for that.”
José Mourinho accused his players of a lack of professionalism and Lloris echoed the manager’s comments.
“The way we play is not enough,” said the goalkeeper. “It’s one thing to stand in front of the camera and say, ‘I’m ambitious.’ The other thing is showing off every day in training and showing off every time on the field.
“You cannot disappoint if you play or not play. Acting as a team is the most difficult thing in football. Whatever the coach’s decision, you have to follow the team’s path. If you follow the team only when you’re in the starting eleven, it causes big problems for the team because you pay.
“You are going to pay in your season and today I think it is a consequence of that. We had a great time in the past because we could trust the unity that was in the team. Today, I’m not sure about that. “
Tottenham was also heavily criticized for their poor performance in Sunday’s derby at Arsenal and Lloris was scathing with the team when asked which of those losses had been worse.
“It’s just accumulation,” he said. “We are a club full of ambition, but I think that the team at the moment is just a reflection of what is happening at the club.
“We have a lack of basic concepts and a lack of fundamentals. All our performances are related to that. I think that mentally we should be stronger and more competitive. Today, sadly, I did not feel that on the field.
“When you’re not ready at this level, you pay right away. It doesn’t matter who the opponent is. There is quality in all parts of Europe and if you do not respect the rival they are being punished and that is what happened. I think all the credit belongs to the opponent because he played the game but full of faith. But the fault is ours, the whole team, the whole club, we are guilty ”.
Lloris said the team had not followed Mourinho’s game plan. “The manager’s message was clear: it was to attack the game, score a goal as soon as possible to make the game easier. But the opposite happened. “
Then he added: “What is most painful is the feeling that we came here not wanting to kill the game. When you’re a competitor, you can’t behave that way. “
Expanding on his sense that Tottenham lacks unity, Lloris said: “We all belong to the team. Soccer is not about individual players. It is not because there are two, three or four players who are going to step forward. That’s not enough. We need more than that. That is something we must understand.
“On the bench there is an influence to have, to push others. Same thing in training sessions. Everyone should be ready to push and make sure they are ready to help the team when the time comes.
“It is not just to stand aside and complain, because in the end what we have to respect is the shield. This is the most important thing. “
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism