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Friedel shrugs off Spurs crisis talk

Goalkeeper Brad Friedel is calling for some perspective from Tottenham Hotspur's critics as the players try and claw their way out of the current slump.

Tottenham appeared to be heading towards a fourth consecutive Premier League loss until Rafael van der Vaart's last-gasp equaliser rescued a point against Stoke at White Hart Lane on Wednesday.

Nonetheless, Harry Redknapp's side have now been overtaken by rivals Arsenal, and their grip on a top-four berth, which looked so assured not long ago, is beginning to slip. This weekend's trip to fifth-place Chelsea now looks like a must-not-lose fixture for the North London outfit.

However, Friedel is refusing to see the match in such all-or-nothing terms. "Football is not pressure," he said. "It might be for some, if you want to heap the pressure on then that's you as an individual person. But you play football, it's a game.

"We want to play well, we want to win but we all saw here [at White Hart Lane] last Saturday [when Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest] what pressure was. I've got three kids and raising them is far more pressure than a football match.

"I don't think it's about holding your nerve, it's about going out and enjoying yourself and expressing yourself because those are the type of players we have. It's continuing what we've been doing all season long. Sometimes you can play very poorly and win a game and then nobody says anything.

"But we've been playing really good football without getting the results we want. I'm not concerned at all and we will go into the Chelsea game confident, expecting a good result."

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