Tottenham have not been motivated by a desire to finish above Arsenal in the Premier League, according to the club’s captain Hugo Lloris, and are focused only on closing the gap to the best teams in Europe. 

Spurs finished the 2018-19 season in fourth place, one point ahead of Arsenal, outperforming their closest rivals for the third season in a row. Fans of both clubs have enjoyed outdoing one another in the Premier League, with the name ‘St Totteringham’s Day’ teasingly assigned to the moment in a season when Spurs can no longer mathematically catch Arsenal, but it is the red half of north London which has been playing catch-up in recent years. 

Tottenham players have made little mention of Arsenal’s campaign, and with both sides now looking forward to European finals – Spurs in the Champions Leagueagainst Manchester City, Arsenal in the Europa League against Chelsea – Lloris insists they are more motivated by catching the very best teams in the world than beating their nearest neighbours.

“We don’t look at that type of thing,” Lloris said of the comparison with Arsenal. “It probably can satisfy some people but it’s not the case for us. From the first day that the gaffer arrived, we always wanted to build something strong, be competitive in PL and in European competition. This is what we’re doing step-by-step. The target is still the same: to reduce the gap with the best clubs in Europe and I think we’re going in the right way.