29 Apr Derby to remember
Mauricio Pochettino has called on Tottenham fans to make White Hart Lane’s last local derby one to remember as they look to end Arsenal’s 22-year dominance in north London.
Spurs sit 14 points ahead of the Gunners in the table and a win on Sunday will ensure they finish above their rivals for the first time since 1995.
Beating Arsenal to achieve the feat would make it all the more satisfying for Tottenham, who will also be hosting Arsene Wenger’s men for the final time at their current home.
The club confirmed on Friday they will play all their home fixtures at Wembley next season while their new 61,000 seater stadium is completed in time for 2018-19.
Spurs are looking for their 15th home victory on the bounce this weekend and Pochettino wants the supporters to help condemn Arsenal to defeat in their last outing at White Hart Lane.
“We feel every time that we play, it is the last game – our fans are so excited, and our players too,” Pochettino said.
“I think that feeling, that energy, that our fans translate to the team, is amazing and it is key, to push you and help you to give your best.
“They can play a part in our last two games, like they are playing [a part] in this season. They were fantastic and they helped a lot the team.
“I think all that we are achieving there at White Hart Lane, is a big percentage [because] of our fans too.”
Tottenham have come close to finishing above Arsenal in recent years, not least last season when they needed to beat already-relegated Newcastle on the final day but were instead thrashed 5-1.
For now, though, the priority remains catching Chelsea, who sit four points clear at the top of the table but face a tricky trip to Everton in the earlier kick-off on Sunday.
“We have our own philosophy, our own titles, our own way and it is important now to be focused,” Pochettino said.
“I understand for the fans it means a lot, all that has happened with Arsenal, but my responsibility and for the players and the club is to try to win and win every game.
“Our opponents are all the teams in the Premier League and to try to be the best is our aim.
“I can understand because after 20 years Tottenham always was below Arsenal and I can understand that means a lot to be above but personally for me I want to be above Arsenal but I want to win the title more.”