REUTERS - Manager Mauricio Pochettino has played down Tottenham Hotspur’s chances of beating Chelsea to the Premier League title this season, but admitted “nothing is impossible” after watching his team cut the gap on the leaders over the weekend.
Chelsea saw their lead trimmed to seven points after falling to a shock 2-1 home defeat by Crystal Palace on Saturday, while second-placed Spurs beat Burnley 2-0 away to breathe life back into the title race.
Pochettino, however, said there was still a “massive difference” between the teams and insisted that Tottenham’s main target was to improve on last season’s third-placed finish.
“Nothing is impossible – that is our idea and our philosophy. We need to keep going in that direction. It is tough to compete and win every game in the Premier League,” Pochettino told a news conference on Monday.
“We reduced the gap to Chelsea by three points but it is still a big gap. Seven points is a massive difference. For us it’s about being focused and trying to improve on last season in terms of numbers.”
Tottenham visit relegation-threatened Swansea City on Wednesday, while Chelsea’s lead could be cut further after they host fourth-placed Manchester City, but Pochettino said there was no pressure on the league leaders.
“Our challenge is to be consistent but there is still a big gap to Chelsea and a lot of work to do,” he said.
”So many of their players have the experience of how to manage pressure. They can win or lose but it is not a question of putting pressure on them. We are fighting to keep our position in the table – second – and then see what happens.
”We will keep to our philosophy and if we assess the season it is fantastic, very good,“ he said. It is a reality that we are there, second in the table. Now in the last period of the season we must focus, give our best and fight to the end.”
The Argentine will still be without striker Harry Kane, fullback Danny Rose and midfielder Erik Lamela for the trip to Swansea, while youngster Harry Winks could be out for the season after injuring his ankle at Burnley.
The 21-year-old left the field on a stretcher, and Pochettino said it “will be difficult for him to play again this season”.
Midfielder Victor Wanyama injured his back in the Burnley game and faces a late fitness test to see if he will be available for Wednesday.
Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; editing by Mark Heinrich