The pain is greater because we know we can do better, says Son after United loss
Son Heung-min’s hurt at Tottenham’s defeat to Manchester United will fuel his desire to learn from new head coach Jose Mourinho.
Having kicked off life at the north London helm with three successive wins, the Portuguese’s unbeaten start came to a halt at one of his old stomping grounds on Wednesday evening.
Mourinho’s side were outplayed for large swathes by former club United at Old Trafford, where there could be few complaints with the hosts’ 2-1 win after Marcus Rashford’s second goal of the evening cancelled out Dele Alli’s exceptional equaliser.
Tottenham’s goal came just before half-time against the run of play and there were few signs of life after going back behind, leaving forward Son understandably downcast.
“I hate to lose any single game,” the South Korea international said. “It doesn’t matter against who or which team. It doesn’t feel nice. I feel hurt and pain.
“Today is very sad and I don’t want to talk with anyone. I think I have to be positive.
“This kind of game against big teams like United or City you want to win.
“I feel more pain because we know we can do better, so I know I can do better. That’s why I feel more pain than any games.”
Asked if the loss to United was a wake-up call, as suggested by team-mate Alli, Son said: “No, I don’t think it’s a wake-up call. We are doing everything the same.
“Of course, it’s very disappointing and very sad about this result, but it’s not time to be disappointed or sad because we have another game in three days.
“We have to carry on and work hard. It’s important to don’t think about these kinds of things and to look forward to another game.”
Son repeatedly underlined the need to refocus and return to winning ways when Burnley arrive at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday.
The 27-year-old said it was clear that “some of the things we have to do better” following Mourinho’s arrival just a fortnight ago, which has left them with precious little time to work on the training ground.
But when it comes to Son, the Spurs head coach likes what he sees and already says he is “in love with that guy”.
When those comments were put to the South Korean, he said: “I have a good relationship with the gaffer. I’m looking forward to working with him.
“After 10 or 12 days I’m still learning so many things about him. I think I can learn so many things and I’m still hungry.
“It will be better and I look forward to working with him. It’s an honour to work with this manager.”