Hugo Lloris admits last week’s defeat by Chelsea showed Tottenham just how far off the title race pace they are.
Spurs were clubbed 3-0 by their London rivals, and accused afterwards by Sky Sports pundits Graeme Souness and Roy Keane of turning it in at half-time.
They were buoyed slightly in midweek by a penalty shootout win over boss Nuno Espirito Santo’s old Wolves side in the Carabao Cup.
But Lloris knows Premier League fixtures are the true test of where a team is at and that, on the most recent evidence, for Spurs that is nowhere near where they want or need to be.
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So it was anything but ideal preparation for today’s north London derby against Arsenal.
The World Cup-winning Frenchman said: “We have to recognise at this moment that Chelsea are a much better team than us.
“But we are still looking for improvement and when we look at the potential of our squad, it’s very good. We just need to work and to carry on.
“You know when you are not at your best, so the confidence is going away and we were a little bit in between.
“And because Chelsea is so good, they know each other well, they won many trophies together, the confidence is high.
“And you know when they feel it’s the moment to press the button, they press, and it’s like a machine.
“Obviously people are watching every game and analysing every game, and that’s normal. But as a player, as a group of players, as a team with the manager, it’s too early to judge us.
“We need time, but in football we don’t really have time. You need to perform and get results for a club like Tottenham.
“Sometimes you can have a great first half of the season and second half… boof!
“The truth is at the end of the season, where you finish in the table.”
Spurs won their first three Premier League games but lost their last two as they get to grips with life under Nuno.
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Lloris added: “I’m looking for a good run of results and then performances because it’s a new manager, it’s a new process and it’s important to feel the improvement and the ideas.”
There’d be no better place for Spurs to ignite their season — and Nuno’s managerial reign — with a fine win than at the Emirates, although they haven’t won their in the league since 2010.
Lloris said: “I remember having some draws, some defeats. But it’s true I am still looking for a league win.
“Sometimes the opponent can be very good, sometimes you can finish the game and you have the feeling that you deserve better.
“But it doesn’t matter. The most important is the result. And obviously it’s not good enough.
“We will try to win this time.
“At the moment, both clubs, they are still looking for a certain consistency in terms of results, in terms of performance but a derby is a derby.
“It’s not even about the league, it’s about pride, it’s for the fans, we know what it means and it’s going to be a big game to play.”