Saturday 23 September 2017

Pochettino believes another slip-up could eliminate Spurs from title race

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino. Photo: Eddie Keogh/Reuters
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino. Photo: Eddie Keogh/Reuters

Independent.ie newdesk

Mauricio Pochettino has admitted losing any further ground to Chelsea could cost Tottenham any chance of a Premier League title fight.

Spurs face Watford at Vicarage Road today, with manager Pochettino challenging his squad not to slip further behind in the Premier League shake-up.

Tottenham trailed leaders Chelsea by 10 points heading into the weekend fixtures, and Pochettino is adamant his side can still have a say in the title argument.

"Chelsea are a long way ahead," said Pochettino. "It will be tough for all the other contenders. Chelsea have a very good gap now, a big gap, with second, and 10 points with us before these fixtures. But I think it's not decisive.

"We need to believe, we are fighting to reduce that. We have a very good opportunity when we play them. But first of all we need to win against Watford, and then we'll see what happens.

"There are a lot of games ahead, nearly half a season, it's a long way."

Tottenham host Chelsea at White Hart Lane on Wednesday in what could represent the ideal chance to claw back ground on the table-topping Blues.

Pochettino has told his squad to forget about that clash entirely though, mindful of the importance of taking a win at Vicarage Road. Spurs will be without the suspended Jan Vertonghen and Kyle Walker for the Watford clash, though Toby Alderweireld should return after a virus.

"We cannot even think about Chelsea, because we have to win against Watford," said Pochettino. "If we don't win against Watford then that would be a problem.

"So the Watford game is the most important - firstly because it's the first match, but then also because we have to make sure we either gain ground, or don't lose any more ground, on everyone else."

Watford v Tottenham Hotspur

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