Mauricio Pochettino "not surprised" by Rochdale display against Tottenham Hotspur

Pochettino stresses importance of Rochdale FA Cup match

Moments after Harry Kane fired home Spurs' go-ahead goal from the penalty spot at Spotland Stadium in the second half, Danny Rose dedicated it to recently-retired Tottenham academy graduate Ryan Mason by kissing the camera.

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has apologised to Rochdale after he said their pitch "posed a "massive risk" to his players as it was "not in a condition to play football".

Debutant Lucas Moura levelled the proceeding after 59-minutes as he latched onto a superb assist from Moussa Sissoko.

First, Son Heung-Min's close-range shot was kept out by Josh Lillis. A stoppage-time goal by Clint Dempsey saw Tottenham Hotspur snatch a 1-1 draw at home to Manchester United on that prevented the Premier League leaders from restoring their seven-point lead.

8 - Pochettino could have picked a stronger lineup but it was understandable that he rested his top men and gave game time to fringe players who need it more. I was on the pitch last night, it's like a snooker table.

Come match day, however, and it looked a new ground, fitted with a crisp new layer of grass and aided by its vibrant atmosphere to complete a remarkable turnaround in just 12 days.

Despite seeing more of the possession, the Londoners struggled to break down the lowly-rated side, and Moura became the latest to misfire when he blasted over the top from the left side.


It will certainly have been Rochdale boss Keith Hill who will have been the happier of the two managers at half-time. Although on this occasion, it seems as though he's in two minds between pretending he hasn't been spotted and playing it cool.

Mauricio Pochettino again chose to rotate his side against lower league opposition as his side travelled to Spotland, and that looked like backfiring on his team when Ian Henderson put Rochdale into a first-half lead.

Ryan Mason's career was brought to a premature halt earlier this week after failing to recover from a fractured skull sustained past year, but his impact among his former Spurs team-mates will live on for a long time.

Steven Davies scored with seconds to spare to cancel out Harry Kane's 89th-minute penalty and secure Rochdale a trip to Wembley.

It was a warming moment for all involved and Mason responded pretty quickly, tweeting: "Rosey" followed by a string of love hearts.

Goalscorer Lucas Moura was also replaced due to a lack of first-team football despite being Tottenham's biggest offensive threat.

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