I haven’t been good enough, admits Spurs striker Soldado
ROBERTO Soldado has admitted that he has fallen significantly below his desired goalscoring standard for Tottenham but is adamant that he will eventually deliver in the Premier League.
The £27 million Spain international was guilty of a glaring miss against Manchester United on Sunday and, despite the faith that is being shown by Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas, has scored only once from open play in the league this season.
Soldado accepts that he must improve and also knows that he must start scoring more regularly at club level to get back into the Spain squad.
Asked whether he had scored as many goals as he would like, Soldado said: “No. Definitely not. Much less. A lot of my goals have come from the penalty spot.
"I want to score more goals than I am doing at the moment. That is why they signed me. I have been doing it all my career. I haven’t done so far here, but I am convinced I will get there.
“We are trying to score, we create chances but we are not taking them. We need to keep going, working hard and the goals will come.”
Of the situation with Spain, Soldado said: “I am doing all I can but goals are what the coach is looking for in a forward.”
Kyle Walker and Sandro did score on Sunday to twice put Tottenham into a winning position against United before two Wayne Rooney strikes forced a 2-2 draw.
The result was somewhat overshadowed by Villas-Boas’s outspoken post-match attack on his critics. The Portuguese believes that he has not been shown sufficient respect and claimed that some reports had questioned his integrity and “human values”.
Sam Allardyce, the West Ham United manager, believes that Villas-Boas showed some “immaturity” in going public with his frustrations.
“You have to use the criticism as a motivational drive to show these people that they are wrong,” he said.
“You’ve got to take it on the chin. You and your players have got to do your talking on the field. I think he’s just shown a little bit of immaturity.
"It can get under your skin, but you can’t let that happen because you’re not going to win.
“However disappointed you may feel about what people say in media terms, it’s still much better keeping your powder dry. I admire him for having a go, but I don’t think it will do you any favours in the end unfortunately.
"But I admire him for sticking up for himself and having a go for what he believes in. In all honesty, he’s probably right.”
The criticism followed Tottenham’s 6-0 defeat against Manchester City, with Villas-Boas especially keen to stress that he included himself, as well as his players, when he said that the club should be “ashamed” of the result.
Kyle Walker, the Tottenham and England right-back, admitted on Monday that he had struggled to sleep after the City match.
He was also distraught to inadvertently help Rooney score one of his goals on Sunday.
“I hate conceding goals, I hate losing and when it’s your fault, you feel the blame,” he said.
“I think we put the City game to bed straight after. I didn’t sleep much. I looked around the coach and I thought with the players we have got, I would take a 1-0 or 2-0 but not a 6-0.”
Walker believes that the City match represented a “wake-up call” and could be a turning point.
“It has come at the right time,” he said. “Hopefully it kick-starts us and we go to where we want to be. The players know we have to dig deep, show why we are playing for such a big club, a top-four club, and prove to the fans, the manager and the chairman why they put the faith in us.”
Sandro described his goal against United on Sunday as the best he had scored but said that it had been the worst week of his career.
“As a team we have to stay together in the bad moments and I think we are doing this,” he said.
“Everyone stayed together, talked and it was good. Everyone is professional enough to know that last week was a scandal. We had to man up and I think we did it. We have to play for him [Villas-Boas] and I think everyone is doing that.”
Spurs midfielder Mousa Dembélé added: “It was not only embarrassing for the manager, but for us as well. It is normal that we are trying to show everyone, because people were laughing at us after that performance. It is our profession and we showed that it can’t happen again.”