Jose Mourinho has revealed that he is under no illusions as to how difficult a match his side face as they travel to Stoke City for an EFL Cup quarter-final clash tomorrow.
Stoke are currently sitting in the seventh place in the Championship but the Potters are not far off the best teams in the division, with only five points separating them from second-placed Bournemouth.
With Arsenal and Manchester City facing each other in the quarters and Manchester United travelling to Goodison Park, Spurs seemingly have an easier passage to the final four than some of their rivals.
However, Mourinho believes that there is not a big difference between the difficulty of Tottenham’s task this week in comparison with their rivals.
He told Football.London: “To win this tournament we need to win three matches. One against Stoke and then, if we beat Stoke, we will have two more matches to play. Against teams who have the same ambitions as we have.
“If I am not wrong, Man City, Arsenal, Man United. Everton, Newcastle, Brentford, everybody wants the same. The difference between Championship and Premier League is minimal.
“The teams are very good, they have very good players and have very good coaches. So even the fact we play Stoke, or Newcastle play Brentford, does not give us easier matches than the others.
“It is a difficult competition to win. We need to win three matches. But going in the direction from what we are saying from the beginning of the season, the next match is a match we want to win, And the next match is Stoke.”
Tottenham go into the clash against Michael O’Neill’s side in poor form, having picked up just one point from their last three Premier League games.
Back to back losses against Liverpool and Leicester have served as a major blow for Spurs’ title hopes but Mourinho believes that those results do not have any bearing on Wednesday’s clash.
When asked if the clash against Stoke was an opportunity for his side to put their recent disappointment behind them, the Spurs boss said: “It has nothing to do with the match we lost or the match we have to play against Wolves next weekend. It is isolated.
“It is a cup game. It is a game to go to the semi-finals or watch the semi-finals on TV. We have to go with a positive attitude and try to win.”
Spurs Web Opinion
In many respects, this is the perfect game for us to have on the back of the recent results against Liverpool and Leicester. We could forget about the Premier League for the moment and focus on sealing our place in the semifinal. If we put in a good performance and manage a comfortable win, it could boost the players’ confidence ahead of the trip to Wolves next week.
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