Slow starts costing Tottenham home points, says Vertonghen

Jan Vertonghen has reminded his Tottenham Hotspur teammates that they have to be at their best for the full 90 minutes after Andre Villas-Boas’ side were again punished for a sloppy opening period, this time by losing 4-2 to Premier League rivals Chelsea, the Daily Mirror has reported.

Tottenham indeed began the Saturday lunchtime encounter poorly and were a goal down at half-time through a spectacular Gary Cahill volley, the ball falling nicely for the England international after William Gallas’ errant clearance.

Spurs raced out of the blocks after the break, however, and took the lead within minutes thanks to a Gallas goal and one from Jermain Defoe, but they could not maintain that pace and Chelsea replied with three of their own, including two from Spain playmaker Juan Mata.

Villas-Boas made no changes to personnel for the second-half, with the change appearing to be in mindset more than anything else, something confirmed by Vertonghen. He said: “It’s been almost the same every time, we have to think about how to put two strong halves together. At the start of the second half, we just totally gelled. We must talk about how to give more pressure.

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