Four Tottenham stars dubbed not fit for purpose after shock cup exit as Stellini apologises to supporters
Former Tottenham midfielder Jamie O’Hara has hit out at a quartet of stars following the shock 1-0 FA Cup defeat at Sheffield United on Wednesday evening.
Despite being absent from the match again, Antonio Conte made several changes to his side for the game at Bramall Lane, with Harry Kane the most high-profile as the Spurs skipper started on the bench.
And Spurs were made to pay for that decision, coupled with a lacklustre performance, as Iliman Ndiaye’s late winner ensured the Blades will host Blackburn in the last eight.
Richarlison was handed the start in Kane’s central role, while Oliver Skipp, who was outstanding in the victory over Chelsea on Sunday, was also dropped to the bench.
The back three was also changed up as Davinson Sanchez replaced Cristian Romero and Ben Davies moved to centre-back to come in for Clement Lenglet.
That led to a jittery performance from a Tottenham defence that has looked more solid lately and ultimately an embarrassing defeat.
And speaking after the match, O’Hara was hyper-critical of Richarlison and the back three for their displays.
However, he did agree on Kane needing a rest after his recent workload.
O’Hara told talkSPORT: “There has to be a time where the man needs a rest. Other players have to step in and do a job for you.
“You’ve got Richarlison, Son and Lucas in your side. You expect to create chances, take nothing away from Sheffield united. Son is miles off it.
“Ben Davies is solid. He works hard, I like him. Dier is the same, Davinson Sanchez. But if you look at that back three on paper, when you’re realistic about your chances of winning the FA Cup, that back three is not good enough.
“(From Tottenham there was) no determination, no resilience, no passion. It was Spursy. So Spursy.”
Stellini apology to fans
Meanwhile, assistant coach Cristian Stellini, who was in charge for the match in the continued absence of Antonio Conte, apologised to the fans after the shock defeat.
He said: “We used a good team to play this game against this type of opponent, the problem was the energy.
“If that’s not at the same level as your opponent sometimes you can lose. We had opportunities but couldn’t find the target. This was the problem for me, the energy in this type of game. I’m disappointed with that.
“It’s not about motivation, I don’t think so. If you don’t play consistently, maybe sometimes you try to manage the energy differently or drop it in the start because you think the game is easy. Our games are never easy. It’s about mentality.
“I think we missed a big opportunity. We have to apologise to the fans, there were 5,000 here to watch our performance and we apologise because we missed a great opportunity.”
Tottenham are back in action on Saturday when they head to Wolves in the Premier League.
READ MORE: Ruthless Conte tipped to axe Tottenham star who has ‘no standout attributes’