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Saturday 22 September 2018

Poch spurred by Raul visit

REAL INSPIRATION: Harry Kane and Raul
REAL INSPIRATION: Harry Kane and Raul

Mauricio Pochettino hopes Raul's visit to Tottenham's training ground can inspire his side to book their Champions League place.

The former Spain striker was at Hotspur Way on Thursday as part of his coaching course and made a positive impact, with many of the players posting on social media about having met him.

Spurs can make sure of a top-four Premier League finish this weekend if they win at rock-bottom West Brom and Chelsea fail to beat Liverpool on Sunday, and Pochettino reckons Raul has lifted the mood.

"It was a very good impact," the Argentinian said. "Everyone here, not only in Tottenham but around the world, you admire a legend like Raul. All that means as a player but as a professional too.

"It was fantastic to share with him, the whole day (on Thursday), and say thank you to him, because to choose Tottenham and try to learn and see how we work, that's massive praise to us.

"I want to say thank you too because he was open to meet our younger players too. It was fantastic, 45 minutes talking about his career, giving advice to the younger players.

"Of course always it changes the energy. It was fantastic for us. But of course, our challenge is to be in the top four."

"That visit helped us a little bit but (on Saturday) we need to be ready to fight. The battle will be massive."

Tottenham will assess the fitness of midfielder Mousa Dembele after he limped out of Monday's 2-0 Wembley win over Watford with a twisted ankle. "It's not clear whether he will be fit or not," Pochettino said.

Harry Winks, a potential replacement for Dembele, is definitely out with an ankle injury of his own.

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