Tottenham can't act like victims over Carabao Cup stadium debacle - Pochettino
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino says his players must embrace the challenge of playing their home matches at different stadiums rather than developing a victim mentality.
Spurs will play their Premier League and Champions League home fixtures at Wembley until their new ground is ready. But the national stadium is unavailable for September's Carabao Cup tie against Watford, so the club have asked the EFL board for permission to play a one-off match in Milton Keynes.
"We are working a lot on being positive rather than being negative about the new things that appear," said Pochettino. "If we are going to play in another different venue, it's a challenge for us. Come on, we can show that we can be strong and perform well.
"If all people think there is a problem and we find a solution, we are stronger. The difference this season is that we try to challenge everyone and show we can fight with all the problems. That is a massive improvement for us.
"If we are going to be a victim of the circumstance, we are going to lose. The only way to succeed is to fight.
"After that, success -- as we have talked about with the game at Manchester United -- it's so thin, the line. You can be on one or the other side.
"But if you are a victim, 100 percent you are going to lose, and I don't like to be a victim. I don't like to victimise ourselves. If something wrong happens in my side, it's my responsibility.
"I always try to explain to the players, when they are disappointed that they do not play, the first thing they need to do is to sit in front of the mirror and not always to complain that 'this guy is the guilty one, you are the guilty one.'"
Spurs face another showdown with Watford this Sunday, with the teams meeting in the top flight at Vicarage Road.
January signing Lucas Moura goes into the match in fine form, having scored three goals in his last two matches and earning a nomination for the Premier League's August Player of the Month award.
"Of course he is helping the team in that difficult circumstance, with Son [Heung-min] away," said Pochettino. "I am very pleased.
"It's difficult to guess [how many he can score this season] because in the last five years he was playing in Paris Saint-Germain and he wasn't consistent there, playing. But we hope that, why not, he can contribute a lot of goals to achieve what we want.
"Last season he struggled a lot to adapt himself. All his career he was playing in one position, on the right -- he's a winger. But this season we tried to adapt him, in different circumstances, to a position that can bring performances and help the team. It's a new position for him to play next to Harry [Kane] like a second striker.
"When he arrived from Paris Saint-Germain he was a completely different player from today because he was in a different reality. Of course, if you don't improve and change, and don't work hard, it's still so difficult to fight for a position.
"Then of course for the players who arrive in January, always it's difficult to adapt to a new system and everything that is new for them."
With transfer windows closing across Europe on Friday, there has been remarkably little movement at Tottenham this summer, with no signings and only a few youngsters departing, mostly on loan.
Toby Alderweireld, Danny Rose and Mousa Dembele were all expected to leave, but they have remained, and Pochettino has little interest in discussing why.
"Harry Kane is here, [Eric] Dier is here, [Victor] Wanyama is here, [Fernando] Llorente is here, [Georges-Kevin] Nkoudou is here, Hugo Lloris is here. I don't understand why you focus only on some names," he said.
"If you review all my press conferences, when did I say I expect this or expect that? Never.
"You are focusing on only three players. The problem is if some player plays, it's 'fantastic relationship with the coaching staff and manager, no problem.' If he doesn't play, it's 'ok there is some problem because of some characters.' Come on.
"I never have a problem with the players, and I love the players who have character, like I was. If you have character it is because you are a winner, and you need to show that you are a winner on the pitch."