Vertonghen: We've stood still

Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen admits that his club have not improved from last season as they battle to stay in the frame for a top-four Premier League finish.

Last Updated: 17/03/14 at 16:18 Post Comment

Jan Vertonghen: Spurs defender admits improvements are needed

Jan Vertonghen: Spurs defender admits improvements are needed

Spurs were beaten 1-0 at home in the north London derby by Arsenal on Sunday, with a goal from Tomas Rosicky inside two minutes proving enough to secure victory for the visitors, who reignited their title bid.

It was a second Premier League defeat on the bounce for Spurs after their 4-0 loss at Chelsea and leaves Tim Sherwood's side fifth in the table and seven points behind Manchester City, who have three games in hand.

It would now be a tall order for Spurs to close such a deficit over their remaining eight league games and they look likely to miss out on the UEFA Champions League placings once again.

"I do not want to look at the table any more because the gap (to the top four) is very big," said Vertonghen.

"All four sides at the top are stronger than they were last year and we have stayed at the same level. If you see last season, then we did not improve.

"I think we do have the players to achieve Champions League (qualification) and I hope we can achieve it next year."

And the Belgium defender knows his club have little time to dwell on their missed opportunities against the Gunners as they have to face the second leg of their Europa League tie away to Benfica on Thursday night, in which they trail 3-1.

"Of course we are all disappointed but we will try to come back with some good results," Vertonghen said.

"It is difficult now but we have to (pick ourselves up) and go again."

Full-back Danny Rose also voiced his disappointment over the possibility of finishing outside the top four after such a positive start under new manager Sherwood.

"Once the manager took over in December, we were on fire and we have had a bad week where we have become detached from the top four and it is hard to take," Rose said.

"It is going to be very hard to break in this season. We might have to look to next season now, regroup and see what happens.

"Some of the games we have lost at home and drawn at home, it has been unacceptable - Tottenham of two or three seasons ago were beating these teams comfortably.

"It is something to look at and we're definitely disappointed that this season may go again without finishing top four.

"Against Arsenal is the best we have played in a very long time, but the difference between the top four and the teams below, is once they get a chance, they take it."

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Readers' Comments

W

e have the personnel. The trick is keeping them fit. Carrick and Blind have missed large chunks of the season, while the defence has been one muddled mess of intermittent stooges, all coming and going at various intervals thus far. We may be just short of title winning quality, but we're half way through. An injury crisis to either of the top two could change things. Optimistic, yes, but not unrealistic.

HarryBoulton
One Point And One Conclusion For United

P

arish is the man to blame for this shambles. Pulis must be chuckling into his left over turkey sandwich. I pray this doesn't mean the Neil Warnock media machine will kick in now and he'll be back on the telly box.

magicfuller
Warnock sacked by Palace

W

e almost found a new way to lose, just when I thought it was getting boring Giroud does that. Although Arsenal are deservedly called 'soft' the entire midfield is out injured. Still must admit MU are managing to win despite a similar raft of absentees. Think the Gunners have good players but poorly coached.

gettalong
Wenger: Giroud deserved red

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