Ryan Mason believed Tottenham showed “bravery” and “energy” to inspire their victory over Southampton after a chaotic few days.
Mason earned a victory in his first game as Tottenham’s interim head coach. Spurs were trailing to a Danny Ings header but turned things around in the second half. Gareth Bale scored an equaliser on the hour-mark before a last-minute penalty from Son Heung-min won it.
The result lifted Tottenham to within two points of the top four, albeit having played a game more. It was an encouraging start to life in the hotseat for Mason.
The former midfielder beamed at the commitment shown by his players after a turbulent week that not only saw the change of managers, but also the club’s entry into and subsequent withdrawal from the controversial European Super League.
Full focus back on the pitch, Tottenham earned their first win in exactly a month. It left Mason proud.
He told Sky Sports: “I thought it was fantastic.
“I’m so proud of the boys – so much energy, so much bravery, especially after the first 20-30 minutes.
“We found it difficult at times but the guys showed belief, they stuck to the plan and full credit to them. I thought there was only one team going to win it.
“I think tonight was important for many reasons – a change of manager, a lot has gone on at the club in the last 48 hours. It was important to get back to winning ways.”
Mason discusses Kane and Bale
Later, speaking in his post-match press conference, Mason spoke about two attackers who will be crucial in his remaining matches in interim charge.
Harry Kane had to miss the game through injury, which will be a concern. Mason is remaining patient with the England captain, though.
He said: “It’s just a case of taking it each day at a time.
“Harry is giving everything to be back out on the pitch. He couldn’t be today but we’ll see by the end of the week where we’re at.”
In Kane’s absence, Bale stepped up to the plate with a goal on his first start since mid-March. Mason was glad to see his former teammate making an impact.
He said: “Gareth is an exceptional player and especially when you don’t have Harry Kane you need someone who can make that difference in the final third.”