LONDON: Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte offered an upbeat assessment of his side’s chances of securing a top-four finish in the Premier League after his side thrashed Everton 5-0 to put themselves in the mix on Monday (Mar 7).
Harry Kane scored twice as Tottenham swept aside a woeful Everton side to claim their second big league win in succession after a 4-0 win at Leeds United.
They remain in seventh place but are level on 45 points with sixth-placed West Ham United and only two points behind fifth-placed Manchester United having played two games less than the two sides immediately above them.
Tottenham, who face Manchester United at the weekend, are three points behind fourth-placed Arsenal.
“A very important three points for the table,” Conte, who has suffered a mixed start to his Spurs reign since taking over from Nuno Espirito Santo in November, said.
“We will try to fight until the end for the best possible position in the table. A top four race for sure and we want to be involved. I think we are becoming stronger in many aspects.
“We have to fight to reach the best possible position and to fight for a place in the Champions League. For sure it won’t be easy. We need to have ambition and I think we can do this, I think we are ready to do this.”
While Conte ruffled some feathers when he questioned Tottenham’s strategy in the transfer window, with first-team players including Dele Alli (to Everton) leaving, the addition of midfielders Dejan Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur has given Conte’s side more balance and control.
“Since my arrival in Tottenham I didn’t know if it could be realistic but now after four months of hard work I think the two players complete our squad,” Conte said.
“Now my expectations have become higher.”
He knows that consistency will be the key, however, and the United clash at Old Trafford has now become a huge game.
“We need to prepare for the game against United. I want an important answer in an important game to confirm what I think that this team is improving. Now this is the past,” he said.
“It is important to confirm on Saturday what we showed, otherwise we start again to have up and down.
“A big challenge against an important team who are fighting for a place in the Champions League.”
Photo Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte (C) celebrates with his player Sergio Reguilon (2-R) after the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Everton in London, Britain, 07 March 2022. EPA-EFE/ANDY RAIN