Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has said that his side are in a similar position now to the one they were in five years ago, when he took over, and insisted that the team need to be given time.
Spurs have regressed this season and have struggled for results, winning just three of their 11 Premier League games so far this term and finding themselves in the bottom half of the table.
Their first two Champions League wins of the campaign have provided a little positivity of late, however, and Pochettino is keen to point out that his team are in a transitional phase.
“We went back to five years ago where we were like this in terms of position, situations and stuff like that, so it takes time,” Pochettino said ahead of this weekend's match against Sheffield United.
“We cannot move the club forward quick, we cannot accelerate the time – that’s the problem. It’s a natural process. We only need to stay calm and work hard because there is not another way to change this dynamic. It’s different to five years ago but with a lot of similarities.
“It’s difficult to talk now because I don’t want to be talking about negative things. I promise you if all goes well, I will explain for you. I want to be positive because the signals in the last few weeks have been positive.”
Pochettino also believes that it is too soon to write his side off from challenging for a top-four spot, despite their early struggles in the league this term – Spurs are without a league win since they beat Southampton at the end of September, going four games without a victory since then.
“When you assess all the circumstances, it’s normal to be in the position we are,” Pochettino continued.
“We’ll see [about the top four]. Today, it’s so early. If we are capable of finding the right balance to start performing in the way we expect, it’s still possible.”
Spurs host Sheffield United next in an important game as they try to end their winless streak and lift the mood around the club ahead of the international break.