A place among the top four looked a formality for Tottenham after they beat Chelsea but West Brom prolonged their current wobble
Mauricio Pochettino was irritated by Tottenham’s lack of cutting edge in the 1-0 defeat at West Brom and urged his players to wrap up Champions League qualification over the final week of the season.
Jake Livermore’s scrambled goal in second-half stoppage time kept Albion’s improbable hopes of Premier League survival flickering but the result at the Hawthorns could also have ramifications at the other end of the table.
Spurs remain fourth, a point behind third-place Liverpool and five clear of Chelsea in fifth.
However, Antonio Conte’s men have played a game less and can apply some pressure by beating Jurgen Klopp’s Champions League finalists on Sunday.
Home matches next week against mid-table Newcastle United and Leicester City should be enough to see Spurs over the line, but Pochettino cut a frustrated figure on Saturday.
“We fully dominated the game, but if you are not clinical in front of goal and don’t score the chances you have, always it’s open,” he said.
“In this type of game, against this type of team like West Brom – they worked so hard on set pieces and when the game is open you can concede.”
“I think maybe we need to assess why,” he added. “Of course the games that we played after [beating Chelsea], yes, our performance dropped a little bit.
“It looked like after Chelsea the job was done and that’s why I’m disappointed in our performances in the last few weeks.
“We need to work so hard during the last two games to try to win them both because it’s in our hands to be in the Champions League next season.”
Pochettino confirmed centre-back Toby Alderweireld’s absence against West Brom was due to a twisted ankle. The Belgium international will be assessed on Sunday.