Mauricio Pochettino insisted Espanyol can still turn the tie around after their 3-1 Copa del Rey first leg defeat at Sevilla.
Cala’s late strike and Alvaro Negredo’s stoppage time penalty put paid to the Catalans after Christian Alfonso had equalised Federico Fazio’s opener, but the Argentine believes his team are still very much in the tie.
“We let the game slip in the last six or seven minutes after we had controlled much of the second half,” Pochettino told a Press conference.
“We did well to come back after conceding such an early goal and struggling a little in the first half. However, after the break we played well and created chances.
“Their second goal was undeserved as it was us who were pushing forward, while the penalty came outside normal time.
“Sevilla have the advantage but we are confident we can still get back into it in the return leg.”
Asked about the performance of referee Miguel Angel Perez Lasa, Pochettino refused to elaborate.
“I’m tired of talking about referees and I prefer to focus on the team because the important thing is to correct the mistakes we made.
“I liked our mentality despite us using some players who have not enjoyed many minutes this season. Competition is good and it shows we have a strong squad.
“Nonetheless, I’m still disappointed with the result, which I thought punished us excessively.”