Belfast Telegraph

Pochettino urges Aurier to develop consistency

In and out: Serge Aurier has not been a regular for Spurs
In and out: Serge Aurier has not been a regular for Spurs

By Jonathan Veal

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has challenged Serge Aurier to make the right-back spot his own after his impressive display in the 4-0 win over Crystal Palace.

In the Ivory Coast international's first game of the season - and first Premier League start since February -he provided two assists in Spurs' joint biggest win at their new stadium.

Aurier, who has recovered from a hand injury picked up at the Africa Cup of Nations, has said he wanted to leave the club over the summer but appears to have been given a second chance - providing he can be consistent.

"I think he was very happy," Pochettino said of the right-back. "We were very happy too. I think the performance was great.

"First half was fantastic, his concentration and focus.

"Now he needs to show and be consistent.

"It's not only one game and the second game the focus and intensity start to drop.

"That is the key in our team, not only him but all the players.

"All the players need to be consistent and understand that every time we are going to compete we have to give our best.

"Give like a collective our best and for sure we have the quality to beat any team."

Aurier is in a fight with Kyle Walker-Peters and Juan Foyth for the right-back position, not that he believes that himself according to a recent interview in France.

He claimed that there was "no competition" for his place in the team, but Pochettino has not seen it.

"I did not see those quotes," he said.

"No, I didn't see but you know, if when I talk with him it's always clear. I didn't see though."

Aurier played his part in a Spurs romp, which saw Son Heung-min score twice, Patrick van Aanholt put through his own net and Erik Lamela cap off a scintillating first-half performance.

Palace manager Roy Hodgson admitted the opening 45 minutes from his side was not good enough and felt the only real positive was Mamadou Sakho playing the whole match for the first time since February.

"We are obviously unhappy with our first-half performance," he said.

"All of us are prepared to accept the responsibility for that. We didn't show the intensity I hoped we would, but I don't want to take too much away from Tottenham during that spell because they played very well. I am glad it didn't become more than four. That is bad enough, so I didn't want any more.

"The only real positive I can take from the game is Mamadou Sakho, after such a long lay-off and such a long time out through injury, got through 90 minutes in a very tough game."

Tottenham Hotspur4

Crystal Palace0

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