Mauricio Pochettino has ‘no doubt’ Tottenham will qualify for Champions League
‘Possibly the best in the world’ – Spurs fans on new stadium

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has “no doubt” his team will be in the Champions League next season.

Spurs could drop out of the top four on Tuesday after losing four of their past five Premier League fixtures.

They host Crystal Palace in the first match at their new £1bn stadium on Wednesday in search of their first league victory since 10 February.

“We have seven games left, five here, and that has to give us a boost,” Pochettino insisted.

Spurs were second in the table at the beginning of the year and have not been outside the top three since the start of December.

Despite their disappointing league form, they remain in Champions League contention this season, their third successive campaign in Europe’s elite club competition.

They are through to the quarter-finals for the first time since 2011 and the first leg against Manchester City takes place at the new stadium on 9 April.

“The best stadium in the world must play in the Champions League,” Pochettino told a news conference before the key encounter with Palace.

“It will be a shame not to be in the next Champions League. We are going to fight. I have no doubt we will be in the Champions League next season.

“It’s in our hands; it’s an exciting moment for us.”

Lloris to remain as first-choice Spurs keeper

Hugo Lloris could only parry a late header at Anfield that trickled into the net off Toby Alderweireld

The performances of World Cup-winning club captain Hugo Lloris have come under scrutiny this season; the 32-year-old Frenchman was blamed for Liverpool’s late winning goal as Tottenham were beaten 2-1 at Anfield on Sunday.

Lloris had an outstanding match in as Spurs beat Borussia Dortmund 1-0 – and 4-0 on aggregate – on 5 March to reach the Champions League quarter-finals.

However, he has not kept a clean sheet in the league in his past six matches.

Former Spurs midfielder Jermaine Jenas believes Lloris has “let Tottenham down too many times” and that 27-year-old Argentina international Paulo Gazzaniga should replace him.

However, a defiant Pochettino, who has completed a two-game touchline ban and will be in the technical area at the new stadium on Wednesday, said: “Hugo is one of the best and he is going to be in goal tomorrow. He is my captain, he is one of the best keepers in the world. That is not in doubt.”

Pochettino said of the defeat at Anfield: “It is a situation that is so painful because we deserved more.

“We have to be strong and back our players. Hugo is going to be great for us and will be one of the most important players for the future of the club.”

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