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Sloppy Spurs slammed by pundits

But Ferdinand and Sherwood believe tie is still not over for Pochettino's men

It was a drastically different tale for the two sides in Tottenham Hotspur's 1-0 loss to Ajax Amsterdam in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Ajax's commanding display earned them endless praise, while Tottenham's sloppy showing was criticised by pundits.

Former Dutch international Ruud Gullit slammed several players for their underwhelming performances.

Speaking on beIN Sports, Gullit said: "A lot of players were disappointing.

"Dele Alli, oh my god, technically-wise so bad. (Victor) Wanyama, my god, technically-wise, (Danny) Rose too.

"I see them every week and how is it possible to make so many mistakes? I know you're under pressure, but you need to know what to do and they didn't."

However, former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand believes the players performed poorly because they were played out of position.

Specifically, he felt that Alli was not utilised properly.

Ferdinand told BT Sport: "You've got to play Alli near the striker. Dele Alli in midfield just doesn't look the same player.

"His best asset is running on to things, running into the box. He's great at doing that and scored many goals in the last couple of years, but when you drop him into midfield, the dimensions of the game change."

The home side were outplayed in the opening half an hour, forcing manager Mauricio Pochettino to convert his back three to a back four.

The changed formation and the introduction of Moussa Sissoko turned the tide for Spurs although they could not find a response to Ajax's goal.

In his Daily Mail column, former Blackburn Rovers striker Chris Sutton wrote: "It was only after 27 minutes that Mauricio Pochettino admitted defeat and changed from a back three to a back four.

"It was a Poch botch for that opening half-hour. Spurs were being slaughtered."

Despite a disappointing night, Ferdinand insisted that Spurs are still in the tie.

He said: "Their away form in this tournament shows they are capable of getting a result."

Former Tottenham midfielder Tim Sherwood echoed the same sentiments, stating that the return of Son Heung Min - who missed yesterday's game due to a suspension - in the second leg is a major boost to the side.

He said on Sky Sports: "This campaign, they've been dead many, many times.

"They need to keep winning and keep getting maximum points in the league.

"Son's going to be a massive plus for them in the return leg. There is space in behind Ajax. He can use his pace to get in behind. He will be looking at that game there, he will be licking his lips.

"They are a fantastic side on the ball but, out of possession, they do give you chances and I think he will capitalise on that. It's certainly not dead. Tottenham can go over there and score."