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European champions Man Utd get their Champions League defence started with a home tie against Villarreal this Wednesday.

Juande Ramos has insisted that Tottenham can still break into the Premier League’s top four this season, despite the club’s worst start to a season in 34 years.

A 2-1 defeat by Aston Villa on Monday night left Spurs bottom of the table and angry fans booed the side off at White Hart Lane.

But Ramos insisted his side would improve once the club’s new signings have bedded in.

“We are behind in our preparations but we’ve only played four games,” the former Sevilla manager said. “Vedran Corluka, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Fraizer Campbell are new to the club and we haven’t really had time to prepare with them.

“But we need to keep the spirit going and climb as high up the table as possible.

“We’ve made it an uphill struggle for ourselves but we have a young squad with plenty of quality and hopefully with calmness and experience we’ll get a positive result and after that things could well change for us.”

Ramos could not hide his frustration at Monday night’s display but refused to make goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes the scapegoat, despite the Brazilian allowing a 25-yard shot from Ashley Young that slipped under his body for Villa’s second goal.

“I’m always angry at the end of games like this with the players and myself as well,” Ramos added. “The blame I give to the goalkeeper is the blame that is due to him, like the other players. On other occasions he also stopped them scoring goals. I think he was absolutely magnificent apart from that goal.”

European champions Man Utd get their Champions League defence started with a home tie against Villarreal this Wednesday.

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