This is a pivotal week for Tottenham, says Andre Villas-Boas
Andre Villas-Boas is desperate for his Tottenham Hotspur side to continue their impressive form in an "important week"
Andre Villas-Boas has told his Tottenham players to prepare for an “important week” as Spurs prepare to host Inter Milan, before travelling to Liverpool on Sunday.
The north Londoners welcome the Serie A side to White Hart Lane on Thursday in the first leg of their Europa League last-16 clash and then turn their attentions back to the Premier League at the weekend.
Spurs head into Thursday’s game on the back of Sunday’s morale-boosting victory over north London rivals Arsenal, which hoisted Villas-Boas’s men into third place in the Premier League table.
And Villas-Boas, who has never been knocked out of the Europa League as a coach, is keen for Spurs to continue their rich vein of form.
“It’s a big game and an important week for the club, we’ve had some big games and we want to continue doing well,” Villas-Boas told a news conference on Wednesday.
“We will treat it as seriously as we have done before. We probably face the biggest team involved in the last 16.
“They are rebuilding their squad. They have invested in young players and are a club in change. But they’re involved in three competitions. The Europa League means a lot to them as it does to us.
“Inter are very experienced in Europe, we need to be aware of their strengths & they will need to be aware of ours.
“We don’t want to concede, we want to avoid that and take an advantage to Milan. We want to be as good as we have been.”
Tottenham v Inter Milan: Pre-match facts
• Tottenham’s record in nine games against Italian clubs is W3 D4 L2 (W2 D2 L0 in London).
• Inter have won five of their six away games in Europe this season, scoring three goals in four of those victories.
• Tottenham and Rubin Kazan are the only two survivors from the seven clubs that were granted automatic entry to the Europa League at the group stage.
• Tottenham defenders Jan Vertonghen and Kyle Walker are the only players from either side to have played all 720 minutes of their team’s eight games since the start of the group stage.