Scott Parker believes Tottenham Hotspur’s season will be a failure if they do not qualify for the Champions League.
The north London side were touted as outside contenders for the English Premier League title as they enjoyed an eleven-match unbeaten run in late 2011.
But Spurs campaign now seems to have imploded – a bad run of form has seen them slip behind fierce rivals Arsenal in the league, and they crashed to a 5-1 defeat against Chelsea in the FA Cup semi-finals.
“If we don’t end up fourth we will have failed as a squad,” Parker said.
“We’ve had a fantastic ride this year and we’ve dipped, that’s obvious.
“Even our own manager is probably doubting us a little bit at the moment. Others (are) too, like our own fans.”
Tottenham’s loss of form began soon after manager Harry Redknapp became heavily linked with the newly vacant England job.
Parker, appointed England captain under interim coach Stuart Pearce, played down the impact of the rumours on the Spurs squad.
“Has the speculation about the manager affected us? I wouldn’t like to think it had,” Parker said.
“It’s probably a combination of a few things – dip in form, a bit of tiredness, but we need to try to stay mentally strong and grind it out now.”
Chelsea were awarded a controversial second goal in the FA Cup semi, with video replays confirming the ball did not cross the line.
Parker is now hoping the injustice will act as catalyst and help motivate the Tottenham players to end their season strongly.
“Something like yesterday’s result might just kick us on,” he said.
“We can try to get that siege mentality. We need to stand up and be counted and show the fans and show the manager that we’re going to try to end up in fourth place.
“We’ve had a few hard-luck stories but we can’t look back at those now. We have five games left and we need to win those.
“We haven’t got 20 games left where we can sit down and analyse where we’re going wrong. We need to try to stay positive and grind out the rest of the season and get fourth.”