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Perisic explains why Tottenham made sluggish start against Marseille

Spurs were incredibly passive in the first-half of their opening Champions League clash, their first in the competition for more than two years, sitting off and allowing the French side to dominate possession in north London.

Eventually Antonio Conte’s side got the job done, helped significantly by Chancel Mbemba’s red card, as Richarlison headed a late brace to give the hosts a 2-0 win.

That helped mask what was a largely poor performance overall, one which Perisic accepted was not good enough.

“We should do better from the first minute,” Perisic admitted.

“We were a little bit nervous in the first-half, especially with the ball. On the other side we defended well and kept a clean sheet but we have to keep going and do it a little bit better every day.

“It was a little bit easier 11 vs 10 and we did better the last half an hour.”

He added: “We signed a lot of new players, especially in the Champions League it’s a different style. Marseille are a really good team.”

Richarlison was the hero with his first two Tottenham goals on his European debut, the headers coming in the space of five minutes.

The Brazilian, who spoke about his excitement at playing in the Champions League when he joined the club in the summer, was seen crying with his family after the match as he celebrated his performance with them.

Harry Kane praised his team-mate for making the most of Conte’s decision to start him over Dejan Kulusevski.

“Richy has been great since he’s come in, trained really hard waiting for his opportunites,” Kane said.

“He’s played really well whenever he’s had them. He’s a real threat with the ball and a great couple of headers today.”

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