London (AFP) – Tottenham are still getting used to calling Wembley home, but need a sharp improvement as Burnley prepare to visit in the Premier League on Sunday.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side struggled at England’s national stadium when playing European home fixtures there last season, and have so far fared no better in the Premier League.
Chelsea’s 2-1 victory last Sunday means that Spurs have lost eight of their last 11 matches at Wembley, their home for the season as White Hart Lane is rebuilt and expanded.
Even though the performance was good in that match, that defeat was a setback for Tottenham, who had looked comfortable in winning 2-0 at Newcastle on the opening weekend of the season.
They will certainly be wary of a Burnley side who beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in their opening Premier League match, although they went on to lose 1-0 at home to West Brom last weekend.
Manager Mauricio Pochettino said: “I think we know each other very well and they were good against Chelsea but struggled against West Brom.
“One thing is sure they will be motivated to play at Wembley against us. For us it is important to play well. It will be tough.”
Tottenham made their first signings of the summer by paying Ajax a club-record £42million to sign Davinson Sanchez, the Colombian defender, and back-up goalkeeper Paula Gazzaniga has arrived from Southampton.
Sanchez is awaiting clearance to play Burnley but Pochettino believes he will prove a fine addition.
“The important thing is that he is so young, at 21 years old,” said Pochettino.
“He is one of the most important and talented young players in Europe. He is so fast. We are so pleased to sign him and have him with us.”
Pochettino has indicated that more signings are needed before the transfer window closes next Thursday, in order to to ensure the club are ready for the twin demands of Premier League and Champions League football this season.
He added: “We need to sign a few more players, and a few players need to leave the club.
“They need to feel they can play more, and they want to play more. That is a normal period in every club.”
Tottenham remain without Georges-Kevin Nkoudou (foot), Danny Rose (knee) and Erik Lamela (hip), even though all three are progressing in their recovery from injury.
Burnley have only played at Wembley five times in their entire history, the most recent of which was the 2009 Championship play-off final, when they beat Sheffield United to end a 33-year exile from the top division.
Two relegations and two promotions have followed since, but last season’s survival has given manager Sean Dyche the chance to build a solid base in the Premier League.
The club broke their transfer record on Monday to sign New Zealand striker Chris Wood from Leeds for £15million, and he made his debut as a substitute on Wednesday as Burnley won 2-0 at local League One rivals Blackburn in the EFL Cup.
That match was a fraught affair, with midfielder Ashley Westwood forced to tackle a fan who ran on to the pitch and shoved team-mate James Tarkowski, while a nine-year-old fan was injured by a flare. Police have charged four supporters over the trouble.
Dyche, for his part, is glad to be able to concentrate on the football once more.
“I’ve spoken before about players growing into the Premier League, and our win at Stamford Bridge was part of that,” he said. “Away from home, it’s a different challenge. You add to that feel of going to a game and building a performance level. That’s one of the key things.”
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