Why Tottenham should forget about playing the kids and focus on Europa League
COMMENT By Dominic Toner
Tottenham should field their strongest line-up against CSKA Moscow on Wednesday night in the final Champions League group stage match.
Spurs have already been eliminated from the competition, but will qualify for the Europa League if they avoid defeat.
The north London club beat CSKA away in the reverse fixture and must give everything to win the game at Wembley. Manager Mauricio Pochettino must forget playing the kids and select his strongest available line-up.
Several Spurs fans believe that they would be better without the Europa League’s Thursday fixtures, but it could present their best opportunity to reach the Champions League next season, with the winners earning an automatic spot in Europe’s top club competition.
Spurs are hopeful of competing for the Premier League title this season and earning a spot in the Champions League through a top four finish.
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They face tough competition to achieve success in the league though this season and are currently fifth-placed in the table, with Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City above them.
The Europa League is often undervalued and would be a great competition for Mauricio Pochettino’s side to target, with Chelsea winning the trophy in the 2012/13 season.
Manchester United have reached the knockout stages of the Europa League after some impressive performances in their group and played some of their best football under Jose Mourinho in the competition.
Pochettino’s side endured a miserable Champions League campaign, but could still achieve something special in Europe.
They have a squad that can deal with domestic and European fixtures and will receive a major boost from a cup run.
In other Tottenham news, a BBC pundit has delivered a scathing verdict on the club’s title bid.