Tottenham should aim higher than fourth, says Gomes
HEURELHO Gomes believes that Tottenham should aim for a top-three finish this season after securing back-to-back wins in the Premier League.
Spurs had previously taken two points from a possible 12 in the top flight, but successive victories over Blackburn Rovers and Arsenal has left them three points off fourth, and six points from the league leaders.
“Should we just be aiming for fourth place? No, of course we’re fighting for a little bit more this season. I think we can compete with the best clubs, we’re very good at the moment and we can try to do something more than finishing in the top four,” said Gomes.
“We were very happy after the derby because it was a massive game for us. If we had lost at Arsenal it would have made it difficult for the run-in to get qualification for the Champions League. We are there again and we can fight with all of the top teams.
“Compared to Arsenal, we have moved up. I don’t know if we are better than them, but we’ve shown in the last two games that we can beat them all the time, at home and away from home. We are up there with them.
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“We have Liverpool next and then we play Chelsea soon. It’s all the big teams, there are a lot of
big games coming up and we need to keep going, keep focusing.”
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Tottenham’s historic 3-2 win at Arsenal finally ended a nightmare run of 68 league games without an away win against the traditional “Big Four”, a record which dated back to 1993.
Gomes admits that defensive errors have played a major part in that winless run during his time at the club, and he concedes that his goal has been breached too many times this season in general.
Tottenham have conceded 19 goals in their 14 top-flight matches so far – more than 11 of their top-flight rivals including Sunderland, Stoke, Blackburn and Fulham. Spurs have failed to keep a clean sheet in the league since the opening day of the season – the goalless draw with Manchester City – and Gomes admits that a shut-out is now a priority.
“Of course beating Arsenal and ending that record will give us belief when we next go away to play these kind of games, but we also had that belief in the past,” said the 29-year-old.
“Sometimes we start the games too sloppily, and we concede early goals that make it difficult for us. If you try to keep clean sheets in the first moments of the game we can compete with these big teams away from home – against Chelsea, against Man United and against Arsenal.
“A clean sheet would be important for us now, and maybe in the next game we’ll try to do it. When I can I try to save all the balls I can.
“In the last few games we’ve been so close to keeping a clean sheet. We conceded two goals in the last 10 minutes against Blackburn, but in the end the most important thing is to win the games.”