Mauricio Pochettino admitted that Tottenham were lacking energy during their derby day defeat to Arsenal on Sunday afternoon.
Tottenham were 2-1 ahead at half time, but three second half goals from Arsenal ensured that Spurs would leave the Emirates Stadium empty handed.
It was far from an ideal result and Pochettino claimed that his side found it very difficult to compete with Arsenal once they fell behind for the second time in the match.
“It was an even game, very competitive, with some periods Tottenham better than Arsenal and some periods Arsenal better than Tottenham,” Pochettino said, as per the Independent.
“When we conceded that third goal, it was tough for us to come back mentally, to find the energy to go again. In that moment it was very tough for the team.
“We paid for the effort in the Champions League game against Inter and Chelsea, and we started to suffer. Until the third goal, I thought was game the even. But after that, we started to pay. It was difficult for the team to show the normal energy that we show. Then, after the sending-off of Jan Vertonghen, the game was over.”
Juan Foyth, Tottenham's young centre-back, was at fault for Arsenal's third goal, but Pochettino was quick to leap to the defence of his compatriot.
"How many players miss a pass on the halfway line?” he asked. “A lot. When he misses the pass, there are still 50 metres to the goal.
"Because he’s young, it’s easy to blame him. But for me, Juan was one of the best players on the pitch. If we put out the pass that wasn’t good, then for 90 minutes he was the best. By far.”