ESPN say Mauricio Pochettino has hailed our progress in Europe this term and encouraged supporters to “dream” of the Champions League final following Wednesday’s 3-0 triumph over Apoel Nicosia.
Goals from Fernando Llorente, Son Heung-Min and Georges-Kevin N’Koudou the article says ensured we finished the group stage with more points than any other club and we are one of five English sides in Monday’s last-16 draw.
The article says that Pochettino has admitted that our European adventures may have distracted his side in the Premier League, where we have won only one of the last six games, but he said there is no reason they cannot make the final in Kiev.
“It was so important and it is fantastic achievement and it is a thing to [give] pride to the team,”: Pochettino said
“But now it is a long way, still a long way. We need to wait until the end of February to play again, we need to see the draw and I hope that we keep that level and of course more motivation and everything, to play in the best competition in the world is massive.
He added: “We are going to try to win every game and to try to go as far as we can. In football always you can dream and, why not? We can dream.”
The article describes how we only beat CSKA Moscow in the Champions League group stage last season but how we have now done the double over Apoel and Borussia Dortmund and beaten Real Madrid at Wembley.
“It’s a massive change. We feel it’s completely different,” Pochettino continued. “Last season we were so disappointed about how we played, how difficult it was for us to compete in the Champions League.
He added: “This season we’ve improved a lot. It’s true that we’ve expended a lot of energy in different games and maybe it’s affected us a little bit in the Premier League.
“Now we need to be focused on the Premier League and start to win games again. Of course from one season to another, I think it’s a massive step up for us.”
Summer signing Fernando Llorente, 32 finally scored his first Tottenham goal in his 17th appearance for the club.The Spaniard was guilty of a bad miss in the 2-1 defeat to Leicester last week and Pochettino said he had been nervous about his failure to find the net.
“He waited a lot to score again,” Pochettino said. “The striker needs to feel the net. You know very well how they wait week and week after and if you don’t score they always are very nervous. It’s not only about playing, it’s about scoring. So happy, he’s so happy now.
“I think always he’s a player who is going to help, is helping a lot, but now I think with more confidence and belief, he is going to help the team more.