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Pochettino Warns Chelsea of Intense Battle to Finish Line
LONDON: Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has warned Chelsea that his team is ready to capitalise on any more slips from the Premier League leaders.
Tottenham closed the gap on Chelsea to seven points on Saturday as they won 2-0 at Burnley while their London rivals were crashing to a shock 2-1 home defeat against
lowly Crystal Palace.
With nine games remaining, Pochettino’s second-placed team suddenly find themselves with a chance to put real pressure on Chelsea for the first time this season.
The title fight could swing further in Tottenham’s favour on Wednesday evening as Chelsea face a tough fixture against Manchester City at Stamford Bridge, while Tottenham travel to struggling Swansea.
With Chelsea showing signs of vulnerability, Pochettino stressed Spurs must take full advantage if they stumble again.
“It’s now seven points, it’s completely different to 10,” he said. “But there’s still a lot of work to do. It’s not dependent on us; it’s dependent on if Chelsea fail. But in that moment if they fail we need to do our job.
“If we do our job we can be there until the end of the season and try to fight for the title. We are at seven points now and it is important to be there if Chelsea fail. We are there fighting for the Premier League.”
Despite that rare home defeat against Palace, Chelsea still have the fate of the title in their own hands.
They require 21 points to be certain of lifting the trophy, but Antonio Conte acknowledged it is far too soon to start planning any celebrations.
“Anything can happen, above all in England,” said Conte. “Every game is very tough against a strong team like Manchester City. It’s important to prepare in the right way for this game. Another difficult game.”
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