Mauricio Pochettino eyes title bid after win at Watford
Watford 1 Tottenham 2
MAURICIO Pochettino believes Tottenham can win the Barclays Premier League title but wants his players to stay grounded after their last-gasp win at Watford yesterday.
Spurs moved into third and above Manchester City, who play Leicester this evening, after Son Heung-min scored late on to snatch a 2-1 victory at Vicarage Road.
Watford defender Nathan Ake was sent off after Odion Ighalo had earlier cancelled out Erik Lamela’s opener but the Hornets hung on for the best part of half-an-hour before Son’s cute finish.
The result means Tottenham have managed three straight wins in the league but Pochettino insists his players must not get carried away by the table.
“Can we win the title? The numbers reflect that it is possible but the most important thing for us is to try to keep inside our thoughts, try to win every game and to keep working hard,” Pochettino said.
“We are very young, the youngest squad in the Premier League, and you need to show your strengths in all the league.
“But to speak about the title – it’s more important to keep working hard and showing our maturity.”
Pochettino has been consistent in his selection and system this season but he deployed an unfamiliar 3-4-2-1 formation to combat Watford’s in-form strikers Troy Deeney and Ighalo.
Eric Dier dropped into a back three and while he was unable to stop Ighalo scoring his 14th goal of the season, Pochettino was pleased with the tactical switch.
“We play always with Eric like a holding midfielder but the way that they play and what we analysed, we found that they play a lot of long balls to make it dangerous for the opponent,” Pochettino said.
“So it was a good solution to give calm to the team and manage the game from the back.
“I was only a little bit disappointed with the way that we conceded the goal. At 1-0 up we should have killed the game and scored more goals.”
The one disappointment for Spurs saw Mousa Dembele taken off before half-time at Vicarage Road.
Dembele was struggling with an ankle injury ahead of the game and Pochettino admits the Belgian may now face time on the sidelines.
“We need to wait and assess him tomorrow,” Pochettino added.
“We hope it’s not too bad. Maybe one week, two weeks.”