MAURICIO POCHETTINO says that ever since he was a small boy his football has never been about money, nor revenge but simply pride.

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino: Why FA Cup clash with Chelsea will be different

The Tottenham manager can certainly be proud of his team right now. A team that might just be about to hand them their first league title since 1961.

It is a massively tall order of course because, even with this seventh league win in a row, Chelsea are still four points ahead of Spurs and remain in command. But playing like this, Pochettino’s team are applying the kind of relentless pressure that might just cause the cracks to appear.

And this Saturday, there is the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley between the two sides. In recent years, Tottenham have been accused of failing in the big games; against Chelsea last season in that feisty match at Stamford Bridge and in the 2015 League Cup final.

But by the looks of this Spurs performance and this current run of form, not any more.

Pochettino said: “In football when you are competitive you want to win. I started to play football when I was very young and I played for pride. I didn’t play for revenge, or for money. I played for nothing more than pride. And that is how we need to feel.

“Last season Chelsea played to win, we played to win. If we lost, if we were not able to fight for the league, it was because of us, not because of Chelsea.

“This game next Saturday will be different because it’s one game at Wembley in a completely different competition. I don’t believe the semi-final will affect the race for the title.”

And as for the minor problem of Wembley, where Spurs had so many problems in the Champions League this season? Pochettino smiles: “We must make Wembley our home, because next season it is sure that we will be playing there. If not, we will struggle.”

Harry Kane has no doubts: “How do we end the Wembley problems? By winning on Saturday. It could be a big thing psychologically for us if we can win. You never know, if we can win it might put a bit more doubt in their minds for the Premier League.”

Tottenham were magnificent on Saturday. Bournemouth simply did not turn up, which helped, but even if Eddie Howe’s team had put in any kind of performance, it is difficult to see how they could have stopped Pochettimo’s men on this kind of form, scoring through Mousa Dembele, Heung-Min Son, Harry Kane and Vincent Janssen first Premier League goal from open play.

Jack Wilshere limped off – to jeers from Spurs fans – and left the ground with his damaged ankle in a protective boot. This loan period is not working out as hoped and that is a worry for the 25 year old.

Howe said: “When you lose one of our best players it is going to be difficult. Jack said he wanted to focus on this year and the summer would be the time he decided his next move. We totally support him.”

Posted on; Express.co.uk>>

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