Tottenham manager congratulates his ‘superheroes’ after unbelievable five years
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Spurs finished fourth in the Premier League despite making no signings, dealing with a raft of injuries and not returning home to N17 until April
Mauricio Pochettino paid tribute to his Spurs players after they finished the Premier League campaign with a 2-2 draw at home to Everton on Sunday.
Tottenham Hotspur were 99 per cent sure of a top-four finish with an eight-goal swing needed for Arsenal to pip them to Champions League qualification, but they got the point they needed to fully secure fourth spot after Christian Eriksen's fine free kick.
Goals by Theo Walcott and Cenk Tosun cancelled out Eric Dier's third-minute opener for the Lilywhites and they looked to be heading for a final-day defeat at this point, but Pochettino's men fought back to end the domestic campaign on a positive.
Now all the focus turns to Spurs' final match of the season on June 1 - the small matter of a Champions League final against Liverpool at Wanda Metropolitano.
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"First of all I want to congratulate my players. The Premier League season is finished and of course in three weeks we have the Champions League final in Madrid, but I want to congratulate my players because they are superheroes," Pochettino said.
"I am so proud of them and the way they have behaved so professionally and what they have achieved in the last five years is unbelievable.
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"Four top-four finishes, four Champions League qualifications and in the end the cherry on the cake will be to play in the final of the Champions League.
"This group of players deserve so much credit and it is unbelievable the effort they have put in until now.
"After the satisfaction of qualifying the club for the Champions League for the fourth year in a row, there are many, many positives in what happened this season.
"The players and the group of staff have shown so much character and we broke down all the doors when the circumstances were against us, so to see their capacity to fight again makes me so proud.
"I think this is our best season after five years and I am so happy and so pleased. What we have achieved this season - top four and final of the Champions League - it is difficult to assess now but in time the people will realise all that we achieve."
Pochettino and his staff have given Tottenham's squad two days off before they will return to Hotspur Way on Wednesday to get ready to face Premier League runners-up the Reds in Madrid.
"The players will only have two days off now, Monday and Tuesday, then we start to work," he added.
"We have our idea, we have our plan. We designed our plan. Of course, you know, we need to be natural.
"It is not a pre-season, but it is not going to be a holiday. In our mind we have a clear way of how we are going to work in the next three weeks.
"For the players, they need to agree, accept and show the faith and trust in us and then of course, if we win, for sure we will have been right.
"Of course the most important thing is that we apply common sense, we have the plan and we are going to deliver the plan, so the players arrive in the best condition to try to win the final."
Additional reporting by Ned Keating.