Football

Jan Vertonghen: Liverpool and Man City won’t replicate dominance

Last season's English Premier League title race was largely a duel between Manchester City and Liverpool.

The pair posted the second and third highest points total in EPL history, leaving the league's chasing pack- including Tottenham Hotspur, who finished fourth, 27 points behind champions City - well in the distance.

However, Spurs defender Jan Vertonghen believes it will be a tighter race this season.

The 32-year-old told Sky Sports: "We lost a couple of games around March, April that we shouldn't have lost and City and Liverpool kept winning theirs.

"We got too far away from them to compete for the Premier League, but we learnt a lot from that.

"I don't think they (City and Liverpool) will go like this again, like they did last season.

"There are probably six teams who want to challenge for the Premier League and we all know who they are. I consider ourselves one of the three or four best teams in the league."

Spurs may not have challenged for their first league title since 1961, but they came agonisingly close to winning the Champions League for the first time, losing to Liverpool in the final.

Captain Hugo Lloris, 32, believes Spurs must move on from being a "young team" with potential to take that next step to winning silverware.

He told ESPN: "We used to repeat that our team are a young team, but it has been five years now that we have worked together and it is the moment to come closer.

"A few weeks ago, it was the final of the Champions League and it has to give us even more motivation and confidence for the future...

"Obviously, City and Liverpool made an amazing season last year and they showed the way, in terms of consistency and results.

"But we know that the difference between a very good season and a massive one is so short."

Spurs will gear up for what they hope will be a "massive" season when their pre-season campaign kicks off with an International Champions Cup clash with Juventus at the National Stadium on Sunday.

Football