The Lilywhites dropped out of the Premier League top four following a surprise home defeat on New Year’s Day.
Tottenham manager Antonio Conte feels talk of a potential title challenge for his side is a ‘bit crazy’, adding it will take a ‘miracle’ to make the top-four alone.
Sunday’s 2-0 home defeat to Aston Villa dropped Conte’s side to fifth in the Premier League, two points behind fourth-placed Manchester United and a further 11 points off leaders Arsenal – the team Spurs pipped to fourth on the final day of last season.
“I continue to repeat that last season we made a miracle, I continue to repeat,” Conte told reporters after the Villa defeat.
“It happened why? Because we played only one competition and we play with 12 to 13 players and they didn’t have injuries in the last 15 games and we played with the best players every game because – I repeat – we played only the league.
“Don’t forget three games to go Arsenal were four points [better off] than us and that we finished 20 points less from Manchester City and we did a miracle, but I knew which was the situation.
“Then I was very clear with the club because in this moment and before becoming a title contender, because I remember very well in the summer, at the start, people talked about Tottenham as title contenders but in my experience, it was a bit crazy to read this.
“To become a title contender, to become a team ready to fight to win something you need to have a solid foundation. That means to have 14 or 15 strong players, quality, and the other young players to develop.”
Tottenham will next visit Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Wednesday for another Premier League game.