Mauricio Pochettino believes Tottenham’s win over Real Madrid puts them among the European superpowers but insists that will mean nothing if they fail to win a trophy.
Spurs blew Madrid away at Wembley as Dele Alli scored twice and Christian Eriksen once in a 3-1 victory that secured their progress to the Champions League knock-out stages.
Cristiano Ronaldo pulled one back late on but Tottenham were worthy winners and threatened even to embarrass the reigning European champions when three up in the second half.
“This sort of win brings with it certain consequences in terms of making us more visible. It’s something that everyone around Europe will have seen,” Pochettino said. “These are two games against Real in which we’ve competed really well.
“You’ve all seen today that Tottenham is a big team; we’re playing at Wembley in front of 80,000 people and these are really historic occasions.
“We now belong in and among the best, not only in England but in Europe, and results like this help people to see that this is where we are going.”
Spurs’ success stands in direct contrast to last season’s dismal Champions League campaign, when their elimination was confirmed after four matches.
It makes this season’s progress, in a tougher group, all the more impressive, but despite its improvement, this team is still yet to win any silverware under Pochettino.
“We need to understand that we are at a level where we are playing fantastic against the best teams, and to get to the next level we have to win things,” the Argentinian said. “Right now, we’re very proud. But this means nothing if at the end of the season we haven’t won a trophy.”
Real coach Zinedine Zidane has come under heavy scrutiny in Spain, with this defeat following Sunday’s surprise loss to newly-promoted Girona in the league.
But the Frenchman refused to criticise his team’s performance.
“I’m not worried,” Zidane said. “Ultimately we came up against a better team who put in a better performance on the night. That’s something that we have to accept.”
He added: “It wasn’t that we played badly, we had chances to draw level at 1-0 down but, as is happening recently, things just didn’t go our way and the ball just didn’t go in.”
Source: By PA Sport Staff