Spurs right on Foxes' tails

Tottenham's Harry Kane (left) celebrating with team-mates Erik Lamela (centre) and Dele Alli after scoring his second goal in the 2-0 league win over Aston Villa.
Tottenham's Harry Kane (left) celebrating with team-mates Erik Lamela (centre) and Dele Alli after scoring his second goal in the 2-0 league win over Aston Villa. PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY

Pochettino says team will put pressure on Leicester but insists it is not yet a two-horse race

LONDON • Mauricio Pochettino believes Tottenham fans have every right to dream about a first league title in 55 years and vowed that Spurs would fight leaders Leicester City all the way to the finish.

Harry Kane scored twice in three minutes either side of the interval as Spurs beat a hapless Aston Villa 2-0 in the Premier League on Sunday to pressure on Claudio Ranieri's side, who were scheduled to play Newcastle United this morning (Singapore time).

"We need to keep the pressure on and win games," said Pochettino whose side moved to 58 points after 30 games.

"You cannot stop the dream of the supporters and they are right to dream.

"We are in a good position with eight games to play. That is 24 points, a lot of points, so anything can still happen in the race.

A CHASE TILL THE END

You cannot stop the dream of the supporters and they are right to dream. We keep the pressure on Leicester. We are in a good position with eight games to play. That is 24 points, a lot of points, so anything can still happen in the race.

MAURICIO POCHETTINO, Tottenham manager, on Spurs' title charge.

"We are in the race. This is very important. If you compare last season with this season, we should be very happy and proud of our place."

However, he insisted that it was too early to rule out Arsenal and Manchester City from the title race, despite their poor form and his team's advantage in the table.

Spurs lead the Gunners by six points and City by seven, although both have a game in hand on Pochettino's men.

Tottenham play Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea in the next three weeks.

"Mathematically, it's possible for a lot of the teams still," Pochettino said. "It's too early to put some teams out of the race."

But, after seeing a "fantastic" Kane score twice on Sunday thanks to "clever" Dele Alli's creativity, the Argentinian promised Leicester a fight to the finish.

"It was very important to get the three points for us to keep the pressure on Leicester," he said.

"We showed good character and the team played very well, so it was good to recover this feeling after a few games that were difficult.

"When you play against a team fighting for survival, it can be very difficult.

"But we showed the right energy and the right mentality too."

Kane took his tally for the season to 24 goals in all competitions and gave Spurs their first league win in three matches.

"Harry had a lot of chances today, but he kept working hard for the team and showed why he is such a fantastic player," said Pochettino.

"Dele is a clever player and he has the awareness and quick thinking to make a big difference in games."

Spurs must now try to overturn a three-goal deficit against Borussia Dortmund on Thursday in the Europa League last 16.

But their manager stressed: "This victory helps us to prepare for the next game against Borussia Dortmund.

"We are down in the tie, but anything can happen in football, so we will try to turn it around."

THE TIMES, LONDON, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 15, 2016, with the headline 'Spurs right on Foxes' tails'. Print Edition | Subscribe