Friday 17 August 2018

Kane sets sights on FA Cup as Spurs edge closer to Champions League return

Tottenham are eight points ahead of fifth-placed Chelsea with seven games remaining in the Premier League following their 3-1 win at Stamford Bridge.

Harry Kane
Harry Kane

By Nick Purewal, Press Association Sport

Harry Kane insists Tottenham must win the FA Cup to regard this season as a success.

Fit-again Kane returned weeks ahead of schedule after ankle ligament trouble in Sunday’s 3-1 Premier League win at Chelsea.

Spurs’ first victory at Stamford Bridge since 1990 opened up an eight-point gap to fifth-placed Chelsea, leaving Mauricio Pochettino’s men in pole position for the fourth and final Champions League qualification berth.

Tottenham will face Manchester United in the FA Cup semi-finals on April 21, with Kane now targeting silverware to top a productive campaign.

“Champions League football is a must and we’re in a great position,” Kane told a number of national newspapers.

“I think we’ve got to try and win the FA Cup. If we do that, we can say it’s been a very good season.

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Harry Kane

“Obviously City have run away with the league this year, and fair play to them.

“But for us, it’s about maintaining the Champions League every year and hopefully we can do that. We’re in a comfortable position, we’ve got to go on and finish well.

“We don’t just want to be a team that gets there one or two years and then falls off. We deserve to be there. We showed this year in the Champions League that we can compete with the best.

“It was disappointing to go out but we had some great results, so we want to be there again next year and do the same.”

Chelsea took the lead on Sunday through Alvaro Morata’s header but Spurs hit back to take the points, with Dele Alli netting twice in four second-half minutes after Christian Eriksen had equalised on the stroke of half-time with a spectacular strike.

The Blues’ first home defeat to Spurs in 31 matches all but ends their hopes of Champions League qualification for next term, and increases speculation about manager Antonio Conte’s future at the club.

Defender Cesar Azpilicueta insisted, however, that Chelsea will not give up their quest for a fourth-place finish.

“It’s a hard kick for us because our target was to get closer to them and after the game we are even further away, but it’s a massive target for us so we have to make sure we fight until the end to try to get that spot,” Azpilicueta told Chelsea’s official club website.

“We started the game well, we scored the first goal and were in control but the late equaliser was hard to take because after the first half, and our performance, we didn’t deserve for it to be 1-1 but that’s football.

“We had more chances to score goals, we didn’t do that and we know the Premier League is tough. We were playing against a strong side and, from nothing, a good strike made it 1-1.

“After that it was different. It was hard to take the goal before half-time when you’ve been controlling the game, but sometimes that can happen, in your favour and against you. Then in two actions in five minutes they came back and got the win that obviously we knew would have been very important for us.”

Press Association

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