Rio Ferdinand blasts Erik Lamela for trying a rabona in Tottenham’s defeat to Leeds United


Rio Ferdinand heavily criticised Erik Lamela for his failed bit of skill (BT Sport)

Rio Ferdinand and Glenn Hoddle have slammed Erik Lamela for attempting a rabona during Tottenham’s 3-1 defeat to Leeds United on Saturday.

Spurs’ hopes of securing a top-four finish are all but over as Ryan Mason’s side were beaten by Marcelo Bielsa’s men at Elland Road.

Son Heung-Min had cancelled out Stuart Dallas’ early opener but Patrick Bamford’s goal put Leeds ahead by half time, while Rodrigo rounded off an excellent move by the hosts to seal the victory in the closing stages of the second half.

But after the game, Ferdinand singled out Lamela for criticism after the Argentine failed with a rabona pass after he was brought on as a substitute in the second half with Spurs chasing the game.

‘Lamela came on, and at times he’s had an impact when he’s come on as a substitute, today it wasn’t the case,’ Ferdinand told BT Sport.

‘There was a moment where he tried a rabona – the goal [rabona] against Arsenal was fabulous and we all were drooling over it – but you’re 3-1 down at this moment and you try a pass.

Erik Lamela failed with his attempt at a rabona in Spurs’ defeat to Leeds (Getty)

‘The important thing was the reaction from all the players in Spurs shirts. I was looking for somebody to get on to him, to say, ‘what the hell are you doing? We’re 3-1 down, play normal’. That tells me a lot.

‘I couldn’t imagine being in a team when I played where that player ain’t getting an absolute rollicking at that point. And it shows that even the fact he’s trying that shows there’s nobody holding him accountable. And I think that’s a huge part, there’s got to be someone in the dragging him and saying, ‘listen, we’re here to get results, that ain’t helping us’.

‘Because there’s no fans in here sometimes you’ll get away with that. If there were fans here or at White Hart Lane, you’d be getting jeered off the pitch.’

Hoddle agreed and added: ‘Football is about doing the right thing at the right time at the right place – that’s not the right time or the right place, they’re 3-1 down.

Rodrigo rounded off an excellent move to secure Leeds’ 3-1 win over Spurs (PA)

‘What Rio’s saying to me is the reaction, you just don’t do that, you’re getting trounced by Leeds, you’ve got to knuckle down and get back in the game, not try that sort of skill.

‘What’s it for? That’s not for the team, that’s for his individual bit of skill that he wanted to do. Do that on the training ground.’

Ferdinand also believes Lamela’s poor error of judgment is indicative of Spurs’ character as a squad.

‘It just smells of the wrong stuff for me around the team when you see that. There isn’t that determination, there isn’t that intensity,’ said the former Manchester United defender.

‘[In my dressing room] there would’ve been people in a queue trying to get a the person who did it. There would have been three, four five of them, and then there would’ve a conversation after. I doubt there’s a conversation in there [Spurs’ dressing room] about that.

‘And some people might look at it and go, ‘he’s only trying a rabona’. But it’s what that means, what does that signal to the opposing team? [It signals] they’re not serious. They are little moments which shape the team is seen, the way the team feels, you’ve got to be perceived in the right frame of mind, you’ve got to look right.’

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