Rio Ferdinand directed his anger at Erik Lamela’s failed rabona attempt during Tottenham’s loss to Leeds on Saturday not at the Argentine – but at his Spurs teammates, writes the Mirror.
Argentina international Lamela – who scored with a rabona earlier in the season at Arsenal – came on as a substitute at Elland Road.
Spurs were trailing 3-1 when he attempted the skill, fluffing his pass – but his teammates didn’t chastise the star for the attempt.
Tottenham went on to lose the match and the defeat means the club are still outside the top four, with their hopes of qualifying for European football next season hanging by a slender thread.
And the multi-time Premier League winner believes that the lack of reaction says much about the current Spurs side.
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.
“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 team 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.”
Spurs legend Glenn Hoddle completely agreed with Ferdinand’s point.
He said: “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.”
And Ferdinand continued to hammer the point home, showing how frustrated the former United star became about the lack of reaction.
He added: “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.
“[In my dressing room] there would’ve been people in a queue trying to get a [word with] the person who did it.
“There would have been three, four five of them, and then there would’ve been 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.”