Ange Postecoglou shuts down claim Spurs fans don’t want to beat Man City | Football

Ange Postecoglou’s Spurs host Manchester City before travelling to Sheffield United (Picture: Getty)

An irritable Ange Postecoglou has rubbished the suggestion that his Tottenham team will be doing anything other than trying to get a result against Manchester City.

After a 1-0 victory over Manchester City at the weekend, Arsenal fans find themselves in the strange position of hoping their deadliest rivals, Spurs, pull off an upset at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium tomorrow evening.

A victory for the home team would see the Gunners head into the final round of fixtures on Sunday afternoon with a one-point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

However, City – last year’s treble winners – are in rampant form after winning their last seven games in the English top flight. An out-of-sorts Spurs, meanwhile, suffered four straight defeats before coming from behind to beat Burnley on Saturday.

Facing the media this afternoon, Postecoglou was not willing to entertain the notion that some Tottenham fans may actually want them to lose against the champions in order to put a dent Arsenal’s title charge.

Asked how he feels about the idea that a ‘proportion’ of supporters will not want their side to beat City, a prickly Postecoglou replied: ‘A proportion of our fans… what does that mean?

‘Really?! What, 50 per cent? 20 per cent? One per cent? Just give me a rough estimate in your mind. You don’t know? Okay… let’s answer a question we don’t the answer to!

Postecoglou was in no mood to entertain the idea that Spurs could look to do City favours

Postecoglou was in no mood to entertain the idea that Spurs could look to do City favours

‘Yeah, that’s fine. People are allowed to feel the way they do but I think I’ve been really consistent.

‘I think I’ve been really strong in my beliefs that it’s important for this football club to get to where we want to, to not looking for some silver bullet to get to where we want to. It’s hard work, it’s perseverance, it’s quality that will get us what we want.

‘Not to fall for any sort of false dawns or any short-term reactions, stick the course and know what real success looks like. Real success looks like trophies and anything else in between, bragging rights or whatever it is, is absolutely meaningless to me, to anyone involved with me.

‘We’ve got a game tomorrow that we want to win.’

Arsenal hold a one-point lead over City ahead of the champions’ trip to Spurs (Picture: Getty)

Pressed on how his players are likely to handle the atmosphere in north London, Postecoglou replied: ‘What atmosphere? You haven’t told me.

‘So you think the majority of our fans are going to want us to not win tomorrow night? I don’t see it that way.

‘I think our fans, the majority of our fans, will create the atmosphere they have always created at our home games.

‘Irrespective, we’ve got a game of football to win and that’s what we are going to try and do.’

Bissouma and Richarlison have been ruled out for the remainder of the season (Picture: Getty)

According to Postecologou, it’s a ‘simple and basic premise’ – his team will be doing everything in their power to secure maximum points against Pep Guardiola’s champions.

Asked whether he’s ever been in a position where his club’s most bitter rivals want them to win, he responded: ‘I don’t know, I don’t think of sport in that way.

‘Like I said, there’s a pretty simple notion to this: there’s a game of football tomorrow night. What do you think is going to happen? What do you think we are going to do as a team or any team on this planet?

Spurs came from behind to beat Burnley at the weekend (Picture: Getty)

‘We’re just going to try and win. It’s a simple and basic premise. Now, how that makes people feel, I’m not really fussed and I don’t really care.

‘I’d hate to think that anyone would think we’d go out there tomorrow night with anything other than trying to measure ourselves against a top team and maybe win a game of football that’s consequential.

‘How are we ever going to become a team that wins things if we don’t win the big games, if we shy away from it? Why would we shy away from a challenge tomorrow night?

‘Look, I get it… your straw poll of Arsenal fans, if it’s correct, then we’re going to walk out to 50 per cent of boos and 50 per cent of cheers tomorrow night, but I think that’s highly unlikely.’

The Tottenham head coach revealed that both Richarlison (calf) and Yves Bissouma (knee) would miss the remainder of the season through injury.

Asked for an update on Richarlison’s fitness, he replied: ‘Yeah, not good. He’ll miss the next two games. Nothing serious but enough to keep him out of the next two games.

‘And Bissouma unfortunately picked up a knee injury in the weekend’s game so he’ll miss the last two games of the season as well.

‘Everyone else who played is okay.’

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