Under-fire Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris reveals he’s suffering from World Cup hangover after number of blunders
UNDER-FIRE keeper Hugo Lloris admits he is suffering from a World Cup hangover.
The Tottenham skipper confessed to suffering a lack of “mental freshness” after leading France all the way to the World Cup final only for it to end in defeat to Lionel Messi’s Argentina.
Since his return, he has been criticised for a number of clangers.
He fumbled Bukayo Saka’s shot into his own net to give Arsenal the opener in Spurs’ 2-0 North London derby defeat at home last Sunday.
And at the Etihad on Thursday he flapped at a loose ball for Manchester City’s first goal then was beaten at his near post by Riyad Mahrez’s deflected shot as the hosts came from two down to win 4-2.
He also made another gaffe on New Year’s Day during Aston Villa’s shock 2-0 victory at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
And the French stopper, 36, said: “You have to take into consideration that it’s not a normal season.
“From the beginning of September, we played every three days until the World Cup.
“Then when you finish the World Cup, for the players who reached the final, in one week’s time you have to go back to your club and again repeat every three or four days.
“So it’s very difficult mentally but also physically to stay at your best.
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“But that’s the demand of the competition this year.
“Even if sometimes you can face difficulties you just won’t give up, you want to continue, you want to push and you want to be ready for the important period of the season.
“We know that from March until June is the moment you win or you lose places in the table.
“But we know also that we have a deficit of points and we have to run after the others to get into the top four.
“But there are plenty of games and we have to stay confident and positive — and also we really want to reach the level that should be ours.
“Hopefully it will come soon and maybe it will happen for the most important moment of the season.”
But Tottenham need results to come sooner rather than later.
Tomorrow’s trip to high-flying Fulham will be another big test of their resolve.
Lloris said: “They have good players, a very good manager and at the moment they have found consistency in their performances and results.
“But we know in football and especially in the Premier League that the truth of today will probably be different in six months’ time.
“I don’t know where Fulham will finish the season but at the moment they are performing at their best and it’s very open — and when you face them you have to prepare yourself to be at your best, especially away from home.”
Tottenham have had little time to prepare but need a win after losing six of their last ten games in the Premier League.
Lloris said: “When you play many games in a short period, you don’t really have time to work deeply.
“You are more focused on the recovery. You just try to improve some aspects of the game and to prepare tactically for the next match.
“Especially after a defeat, it’s always better to play sooner.
“Whoever you play, whoever you face, the demands are very high.
“You always need to be at your best as on a bad day you can lose to any team.
“The most important thing is to look forward, to keep your chin up and be ready to compete.”
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