Potter: We weren't at our best

Spurs deserved place in the fifth round according to Albion's head coach.

By Luke Nicoli • 05 February 2022

By Paul Hazlewood
Graham Potter's team are back in action next weekend when they take on Watford.

Graham Potter admitted Tottenham were deserved winners as Albion bowed out of The FA Cup at the fourth-round stage.

The visitors made an indifferent start to the game and were 2-0 down after 24 minutes, thanks to Harry Kane’s opener and a fortuitous second that looped in off the foot of Solly March.

A change of formation saw a much-improved Albion performance after the break, with Yves Bissouma handing the side a lifeline on 63 minutes, only for Spurs to again extend their lead just three minutes later through Kane. 

“It wasn’t one of our better performances but credit to Spurs, they deserved to win and go through,” said Potter. “We have to be honest enough to say that we weren’t at our best and you need to be when you’re coming here and playing against a good, well-organised side with some fantastic players.

“In all aspects we weren’t quite at our level. We gave the ball away, which is a bit unlike us, and if you do that, Tottenham have got some really good players and they are going to hurt you. 

“The first goal was quite cheap from our perspective and the second was a deflection that goes in, so overall I think we deserved to be down in the game at half time. 

“We responded really well, got the goal and then the third one is not a great one from our perspective. That took the wind out of our sails, but at the same time the boys gave everything, they never gave up and kept pushing. We gave everything but we weren’t quite good enough.”

One of the bright spots for Albion was the return to action of Bissouma following African Cup of Nations duty with Mali, and he capped a solid performance with his first goal of the season.

“He was really good. He hasn’t had much training with us, just a couple of days, but we know his quality, we know what he can do, so I’m really pleased that he got a goal. It’s a little bit unusual for him but nice for us and I thought, especially in the second half, he grew into the game and was really good.”

Attentions now turn to Watford in the Premier League on Saturday with Potter’s side sitting a very respectable ninth in the table.

“It will be a different game, of course, but we’ll analyse this game, learn from it, which is sometimes the only thing you can do when the result goes against you. 

“We have to prepare again, recover, which is exactly what we’ve done in the Premier League so far; be competitive, try our best and see how it goes.”