Ledley King has laughed off talk of a crisis at White Hart Lane and is confident that Tottenham will beat Chelsea and Newcastle to fourth despite their recent woeful form.
Spurs’ poor run sunk to an alarming new low yesterday when they were soundly beaten and outplayed at home by Barclays Premier League newcomers Norwich 2-1.
The Londoners have won just one of their last eight league games and a campaign that looked destined to end with a title challenge is in real danger of fading away in to obscurity.
Harry Redknapp’s team will be five points behind third-place Arsenal if the Gunners win at Wolves tomorrow and Spurs sit level with fifth-place Newcastle, who hold a two-point advantage over Chelsea.
Tottenham face the Blues on Sunday in their FA Cup semi-final at Wembley and King is keen to quash any talk of the club’s season imploding.
“There is not a crisis in any way,” King said.
“We have top players here. We lost against Norwich, but we have to move on and get up for another big game we have on Sunday.”
As skipper, King feels obliged to play a big part in ensuring that his players’ confidence is not rocked by yesterday’s defeat – which was only the third time they have lost at home in the league this term.
He added: “It’s up to the senior lads to lift the spirits of the rest of the lads and keep them there.
“We can’t dwell on this. We will have to look at a few things and have a few words and try to move on.
“The earlier we speak together about it, the better it will be.
“We have to stick together and keep working hard. That’s the only way.
“There aren’t many games now until the end of the season and we just have to give it a big push until then.”
Spurs looked out of sorts yesterday, lacking any real venom in attack while also looking worryingly weak in defence.
King and Younes Kaboul – two reliable stalwarts of this season – were in disarray at the back.
An unfortunate mix-up allowed Anthony Pilkington an easy chance to slot home the Canaries’ first and their failure to close down Elliott Bennett proved costly as he drove home spectacularly from 20 yards to seal the win for the visitors.
To make matters worse for Redknapp, he is facing a selection headache ahead of the trip to Wembley, with Kaboul hobbling off in the first half with a knee injury.
William Gallas has struggled with a calf problem all year and Michael Dawson is out for the season with an ankle injury while King did not seem certain of playing on Sunday thanks to his chronic knee injury.
“Err, yeah, I should be all right,” the centre-back said.
“We will have to see. We will see how it feels over the next couple of days.
“I am hopeful, but the knee is the knee, so…”
Spurs outplayed Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the league recently, and the west London outfit have the added worry of having to deal with facing Barcelona in their Champions League semi-final three days after this weekend’s semi-final.
Roberto Di Matteo may rest a few of his stars but King admits the Blues will prove to be tough opponents regardless of who starts.
“Chelsea are a top side. They have top players so whoever comes in they are going to be good,” he said.
King does admit, though, that the Barcelona games could be a distraction.
“We are hoping that with the intensity of the two games against Barcelona, they might slip up in the league,” King said.