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Dejan Kulusevski has acknowledged Tottenham were “too open” against Wolves and insisted they must work harder to get their top-four charge back on track.

Spurs slipped to a 2-1 loss at home to the Midlands club on Saturday, which allowed Aston Villa to leapfrog them and take back fourth position, while sixth-placed Manchester United are only three points behind.

Tottenham lacked fluency against Wolves and while Kulusevski levelled 34 seconds into the second half, the visitors continued to cause Ange Postecoglou’s team problems on the break and it ultimately resulted in Joao Gomes’ second goal after a superb Pedro Neto run.

“Nothing worse than losing so very tough,” Kulusevski said.

“We had a lot of chances, we can’t score them and then not enough discipline when we lost the ball.

“They had two or three counter-attacks where we’re not good enough and they made us pay. After that it is difficult to come back again in the game.

“We were too many guys up front. Too open and not running back as hard as we should. They could score a couple and that’s not good enough.”

Tottenham have shipped chances all season and only kept five clean sheets in the Premier League, but have missed first-choice defenders Cristian Romero and Micky van de Ven for chunks of the campaign.

The absence of speedy full-backs Pedro Porro and Destiny Udogie also curbed Spurs’ creativity against Wolves and they face a two-week wait to put things right as Friday’s scheduled fixture at Chelsea was postponed due to the Blues’ Carabao Cup final involvement.

Postecoglou stated hard work would get Tottenham back to the free-flowing football they produced during the opening months of the season and Kulusevski echoed his sentiments ahead of Crystal Palace’s visit on March 2.

Kulusevski added: “We are not playing good enough, especially first half. We are not playing good enough and losing too many balls, so we have to get better.

Tottenham suffered a home defeat
Tottenham suffered a home defeat (Kieran Cleeves/PA)

“We have two weeks to work on that and come back much better.

“We found a couple of solutions (against Wolves) so it is there and we just have to get better and practice in training.

“We are football players, we want to play a lot and two weeks is a long of time, but we have to do the journey. We have to train and get better, so we have to see it as a positive thing.”