Pope: Important Not To Throw In The Towel
Clarets keeper eyeing next games after preventing Spurs from matching record defeat
Nick Pope says the Clarets can’t dwell on their first-half demise at Spurs as they prepare for the battles to come.
Three goals inside the opening half-hour at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – including one after 68 seconds – effectively ended Burnley’s hopes of extending a four-match unbeaten Premier League run and securing a first top-flight success at Spurs since 1974.
But Sean Dyche’s men did avoid a repeat of last season’s 5-0 defeat - their joint heaviest in the Premier League - on their first visit to the venue.
And Pope stressed the importance of managing that with a visit to come from Leicester City next Wednesday night and the gap above the Premier League’s bottom three down to five points.
“We didn’t help ourselves by going one behind and two behind quickly,” said the Clarets’ keeper.
“It was always going to be uphill from there and that’s the way it proved to be.
“We made mistakes and been punished like good players do. They are top players and they performed well.
“It’s important not to go under and throw the towel in. That’s a bad sign for the team to see anything like that.
“You have got to show character. You can’t sit in your dressing room and not come out.
“You’ve got to come out and put your shoulders back. There’s still progress to be made and we’re still fighting for points.
“It’s not everything about today. It’s about making good decisions and playing better and taking that into the next game.”
Pope was key in preventing Tottenham from adding to a Gareth Bale double and first-half strikes from Harry Kane and Lucas Moura.
The England international made top-class saves from Kane and Heung-Min Son, who laid on both goals for Bale as the Wales international struck after a minute and then early in the second half as Spurs led 4-0 with more than half an hour to go.
The Clarets were unable to offer a goal-scoring response but prevented further damage and saw top scorer Chis Wood return from injury via the bench ahead of the mid-week visit of the top-four Foxes, who lost 3-1 at home to Arsenal on Sunday afternoon.
“Games come around quickly. They have done since Christmas and it’s another one in mid-week,” added Pope.
“It’s a home game so it’s something we’re looking forward to.
“It’s a result that’s gone wrong today but when you come to places like this and top players perform really well it’s going to be really difficult and then you give them a head-start and it’s even more difficult.
“You don’t judge a season on one game or just today. We’ve just come off the back of four unbeaten and we have played some good stuff, so it’s about taking the positives into the next game.”