Mauricio Pochettino has urged Tottenham to stop obsessing about Arsenal, but admits he hopes his side to finish the season over the Gunners. Speaking after a 2-1 defeat to Southampton on Sunday (8 May), the Argentinian added that he has already identified where and how Spurs need to improve ahead of next season, adding that it doesn't mean his team needs more players.
Son Heung-min put Pochettino's side ahead after only 16 minutes following an impressive start to the game. However, Steven Davis scored twice as Southampton came from behind to secure the three points.
The defeat, following two draws against West Brom and Chelsea, leaves Spurs hanging on to second spot ahead of Arsenal with only one game remaining. But Pochettino said after the game as quoted by The Independent: "I don't care about Arsenal,"
"I want to win the league and be on the top. Sure I want to be above them. The supporters and players feel the same but to try to improve and be bigger we need to look at us and not care what happens with our neighbours
"I understand the fans' feelings. It's normal. For us the same. [But we need to] create and keep our way, build our own philosophy and ideas and the consequence [if we get it right] is to be above all our opponents, not just Arsenal. We need to spend our energy to win games like today. I don't care about opponents."
Pochettino believes that his side didn't deserve to lose against Southampton anyway. Yet, the manager added that his current squad need to give another step forward to continue their development ahead of next season.
"It was our last game at home – you want to win – so I am disappointed for our supporters," he said. "We were better than Southampton but conceded two soft goals. We have 70% possession but it's only data. In football you never know. We created more but we need to be more clinical in front of goal.
"If we want to fight to really win the league we need to improve. We need to be more aggressive and kill the game before but we are young. We need to be critical with ourselves to improve next season. We are clear where we need to improve and how. It doesn't mean we need to add players. The ones we have need to improve."