Tottenham No2 Cristian Stellini apologised to the away support after their FA Cup defeat at Sheffield United.
Iliman Ndiaye’s solo goal on 79 minutes proved decisive in the fifth round tie.
There were few clear-cut chances but we created enough – Richarlison fired over from the angle and Lucas Moura floated a cross onto the crossbar in the first half, Ivan Perisic tested Wes Foderingham with a glancing header and, in added time, Harry Kane uncharacteristically headed wide from Perisic’s cross.
Stellini told the club’s website: “Yes, a difficult night, because our expectation was to play with more energy, to create more problems to them.
“We had some chances to score, but we were not perfect in the last pass, or to find the target. We needed more energy. Our effort was good, we don’t complain for the effort, but the energy had to be different.”
Tottenham’s wait for a major trophy continues – they won the League Cup in 2008 – and they have now exited the FA Cup at the fifth-round stage three times in the last four years.
Head coach Antonio Conte missed his side’s latest exit as he recovers from gallbladder surgery and Stellini said: “I think we missed a big opportunity and we have to apologise to the fans.
“There were 5,000 of them here to watch our performance and we apologise because we missed a big opportunity.”