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Defoe and Holtby salute Spurs' growing belief

Published: Thursday 3 October 2013, 22.00CET
Attacking partners Jermain Defoe and Lewis Holtby spoke of the growing confidence in the Tottenham Hotspur FC dressing room after leading them to a 2-0 win at FC Anji Makhachkala.
by Richard van Poortvliet
from Saturn

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Published: Thursday 3 October 2013, 22.00CET

Defoe and Holtby salute Spurs' growing belief

Attacking partners Jermain Defoe and Lewis Holtby spoke of the growing confidence in the Tottenham Hotspur FC dressing room after leading them to a 2-0 win at FC Anji Makhachkala.

Jermain Defoe says Tottenham Hotspur FC believe they can beat anyone after strolling to a 2-0 victory against FC Anji Makhachkala to maintain their 100% record in UEFA Europa League Group K. Lewis Holtby was instrumental in a free role behind Spurs' lone forward and the German international praised his understanding with Defoe. Anji improved as the second half wore on, but the Dagestan side's Andrei Eschenko believed they needed to attack more if they wanted something out of the game.

Jermain Defoe, Tottenham forward
It was difficult [early on] because they sat behind the ball and tried to hit us on the counterattack and that meant we couldn't really find any space to try and cut through the middle. We tried to get it out wide and we managed to score a goal and to then go 2-0 into half-time was vital. We tried to get the third in the second half as that kills the game completely.

This is one of the strongest squads [we've had] with the new players that have come in. I think the manager has done well tactically as we are not conceding a lot of goals and we are always going to score goals with the players that we have got. When players come into the team they know their jobs and they know what they have to do, which is important. I believe we have that winning mentality and we believe we can win every game we play.

There's still a long way to go, but if we keep on winning games you never know what could happen.

Lewis Holtby, Tottenham midfielder
When you play No10 you have to vary your position. You have to play on the left, play on the right; you have to give support for the strikers. That's my job and that's what I try to do. Jermain and I link up very well and that's my fifth assist for him. We always speak about that after the game and before the game and I am very happy that we won.

The dressing room is really happy and everyone is getting along very well. There is a top team spirit and I haven't seen that for a long time in any team, so it makes it fun to train with these guys all the time. We have got so much quality in the depth of our squad and you can see that by who didn't play today. So there are great things to look forward to.

Andrei Eschenko, Anji defender
In the first half we were more defensive but when Tottenham went 2-0 in front, they started to sit back and defend their lead. Of course we needed to attack and try and find goals and we started to keep possession and create some good opportunities. However, if we wanted to win, then we needed to attack even more.

Tottenham are a strong side and a difficult team to break down defensively. Nevertheless, they did give us opportunities to play and we created some decent openings; if we had taken them, then the game would have been much more interesting. We have a number of players coming back from injury and when they come back, we will be a different side.

Last updated: 07/10/13 16.16CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuropaleague/season=2014/matches/round=2000469/match=2012521/postmatch/quotes/index.html#spurs+pair+brim+with+belief

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