Spurs will be ready for their European date with destiny, vows Kranjcar
NIKO Kranjcar believes that the Champions League will give Tottenham all the motivation they need as they continue their pre-season programme in America. The majority of the Spurs squad have flown out to the States ahead...
By Ben Pearce
NIKO Kranjcar believes that the Champions League will give Tottenham all the motivation they need as they continue their pre-season programme in America.
The majority of the Spurs squad have flown out to the States ahead of Saturday's friendly with San Jose Earthquakes, and they will also take on New York Red Bulls and Sporting Lisbon in the next 10 days.
Kranjcar believes that the rest of the Lilywhites will benefit hugely from their trip across the Atlantic, and he feels that the prospect of next month's Champions League qualifiers will give the players all the encouragement they need to find form and fitness.
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"Of course we're all looking forward to that, we're all looking forward to an exciting season I think. Obviously it starts with all the hard work in pre-season, but it's easier to do all that hard work when you've got something like a Champions League qualifier to look forward to," said Kranjcar.
"I think the most important thing is that [in America] we'll have all the pitches and all the resources that we need to have a great pre-season. From that point of view it's probably the best place to go in the world, with all the equipment, all the technology that they've got.
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"I think it's a great place to go and obviously having those kind of games is going to help us to get our confidence, our passing and our football motions back, which is really important in pre-season."
Kranjcar's last Tottenham appearance came in last season's FA Cup semi-final, when he bravely battled through the final minutes of extra-time despite suffering ankle ligament damage.
Fortunately Spurs claimed a top-four finish in his absence, and now Kranjcar is ready to play his part in the next stage of the club's European adventure by securing a place in the group stages.
"It's exciting times and I said from day one last season that we could do it, and at the end of the day we did," he said. "It's really satisfying, especially when we've been claiming all season that we belong there. To prove that to everyone obviously gives you a lot of satisfaction.
"When you look at the start of our season I think August is going to be very very important. Playing Manchester City in the first game, it's interesting, I think it's a great first day. Last year it was Liverpool and it boosted a great start and it gets people going as well. It's a great game for the beginning of the season, especially because it's at home.
"Obviously you have to know that the season is going to be long, but we're all looking forward to a good start, getting the confidence going, and especially for the Champions League qualifier because it would be sad to see us not get into the group stages after all the effort and the hard work that we put into it last season."
You can watch the full interview with Niko Kranjcar on Spurs TV Online.