Spurs fully focused on Crystal Palace battle after midweek Champions League heroics
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Tottenham Hotspur manager challenges squad to use Wednesday’s win as springboard to win a big trophy this season
Mauricio Pochettino’s focus has turned to Tottenham Hotspur’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace on Sunday at Wembley after Wednesday’s heroics in the Champions League against Real Madrid.
Spurs sent out a statement to the rest of Europe with a 3-1 victory over the La Liga giants under the arch.
Dele Alli netted a brace with Christian Eriksen also on target, but Tottenham will be out to avoid a rude awakening this weekend when they host basement club Palace in a 12pm kick-off.
When asked if the victory over Madrid was his best night in management, Pochettino said: “I don’t know.
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“I think it is important for everyone and we all feel very happy about this great victory, but, honestly, I feel happy like this when we beat Liverpool or AFC Bournemouth.
“Maybe it is strange, but I feel relaxed and calm. Of course I am happy, but I’m thinking about Crystal Palace on Sunday, 12pm and we must win.”
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Tottenham will be desperate to build on their victory over Madrid and remain within touching distance of league leaders Manchester City.
Spurs are eight points behind the Citizens with 10 games played ahead of this round of matches at the weekend.
After Tottenham host Palace on Sunday at 12pm, City will do battle with their north London foes Arsenal at the Eithad Stadium (2.15pm kick-off).
For once, Spurs supporters may hope for a favour from their rivals to boost their own hopes of closing the gap on Pep Guardiola’s side.
Pochettino, after Tottenham’s triumph over Madrid, admitted the historic win will count for little unless his group of players can build on it and eventually claim a big title.
He added: “What is the most important thing for me is we were very competitive against one of the best teams in the world.
“We need to understand that we are at a level where we are playing football against the best teams, but in order for us to get to the next level, we have to start winning things and this is what we need in mind the whole time.
“All players need this internally to motivate themselves to get to the next level. Right now of course we are very proud of the match, but this means nothing if at the end of the season we haven’t won a trophy.”