Mauricio Pochettino dreaming big after impressive Tottenham end Chelsea's run

04 January 2017 11:54

Mauricio Pochettino believes his Tottenham side can achieve "big things" after ending Chelsea's 13-game winning run with a 2-0 London derby victory.

Spurs are now third in the Premier League, seven points behind leaders Chelsea, after Dele Alli's double secured the hosts' fifth straight success at White Hart Lane.

"Our performance showed we can be competitive and we can achieve big things," Pochettino said.

"It's only one game. We need to be regular and consistent during the whole season.

"We're happy for the victory, but it's only three points.

"If we want to fight until the end of the season for big things, for trophies, you need to keep that intensity. That is always the challenge."

Chelsea were seeking a single-season record of 14 straight wins, to draw level with Arsenal's all-time record from 2002 which was spread across two campaigns.

The Blues would have gone 10 points clear of their hosts with victory and eight clear of Liverpool, but now their lead is five points.

"It was important for us to reduce the gap," Pochettino added.

"The top four is very competitive, it's very close. It's true the gap still is important to Chelsea.

"It was the perfect thing for us to arrive to third place and be close. That is important for us and there are a lot of games before the end of the season."

Pochettino was pleased with the maturity his side showed, having imploded at Stamford Bridge last May, when they conceded a two-goal lead in a draw which handed the title to Leicester.

"The performance was fantastic," Pochettino said.

"We are very pleased. The most important thing was that we showed great character.

"We were very competitive. Maybe that was the problem last season, that we missed to compete in a competitive way.

"You need to play, you need to suffer, you need to fight. Sometimes you need to give the ball to them because they push you.

"Today we understood what it means to be competitive."

Pochettino praised Alli, but does not believe the former MK Dons midfielder is an exception in the Spurs ranks.

Pochettino added: "Dele was clinical in front of goal. It was great.

"He's showing big talent and potential. Not only him. We can talk about Harry Kane, many others."

Chelsea's most recent prior defeat was also in north London, a 3-0 loss at Arsenal on September 24.

Head coach Antonio Conte believes his team has been transformed since.

Conte said: "After a defeat it's always very difficult to know your reaction. But, I think this defeat is totally different.

"It's normal when you lose a game to try to think why.

"I think that this defeat is totally different if you compare our defeats in September.

"Against Liverpool and Arsenal at that moment we weren't a team.

"Tonight we showed we are a team. We are a strong team. It's important.

"We tried to fight. We tried to win the game, or not lose.

"I saw the right will in my players, but don't forget that tonight we played against a really good team, a tough game."

Conte rued the moment which saw Diego Costa and Pedro squabble in the first half.

He added: "This is a normal situation. A good chance for us and we wasted this chance."

Conte switched to a 3-4-3 formation at half-time of the Arsenal loss and it has served his team well since.

"To stop us the other teams are changing formation," Conte said.

He says six teams - Tottenham, Manchester City, Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea - are in title contention. United are 10 points behind Chelsea in sixth.

Conte said: "The situation is very clear. There are six teams that can fight for the title or a place in the Champions League.

"I'm sure one of these six teams will be champions."

Source: PA


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