Tottenham’s slow start to the Premier League season has seen them defeated in three of their five home games to date.
Luckily it seems manager Mauricio Pochettino has got to the bottom of the matter, although it’s hard to imagine it will change during the 2014/15.
The White Hart Lane pitch is too small for his side to express themselves.
Indeed the Lilywhites’ north London patch is officially the joint-shortest in the division, with only QPR and Stoke hosting their football on more slender decks.
Talking to the Guardian, the Argentine tactician suggested:
“Our style means we need a bigger space to play because we play a positional game,”
“It’s true that White Hart Lane is a little bit tight and it’s better for the opponent when they play deep. On Sunday there were two shots from Newcastle – it was unlucky for us. And they play deep. West Bromwich play deep, Liverpool the same, they play very deep and it was difficult for us. We need time to adapt to our new set-up and to understand better our position on the pitch.”
Pochettino’s theory offers some mitigation to the litany of frustrating home points dropped to inferior opposition in recent seasons and offers a measurable hypothesis as to how things can change for the better – make the pitch bigger.
Tottenham are 3/1 to accumulate more Premier League points on the road than on their own restrictive pastures this season and it’s a far from unrealistic wager.
Manchester United and Sunderland both found more profit away from the ranch last term, while the Lilywhites themselves accumulated just three points more at home.
The previous campaign had seen White Hart Lane yield Spurs just four points more than the frog and toad to boot.
Happily for beleaguered Lilywhites their next top-flight outing is an away trip to Villa Park, where they have won on each of their last three visits.
A 10-0 aggregate victory margin during those meetings suggests they’re a fair 6/5 shot to beat Aston Villa, who have lost their last five games without scoring.