Rafael seeks consistency
Rafael van der Vaart has warned Tottenham they must improve against the Premier League's lesser teams.
Last Updated: 24/12/10 11:52am
Rafael van der Vaart has warned his Tottenham team-mates they must improve against the Premier League's lesser teams to ensure UEFA Champions League qualification.
Spurs finished fourth in the Premier League last season and have again shown this term that they can compete with the best in the business.
A win over Arsenal in the North London derby and draws with Chelsea and Manchester City have suggested that Harry Redknapp's men could even be title contenders.
However, they have suffered surprise losses to sides like West Ham and Wigan who are battling to avoid relegation.
Van der Vaart is looking for greater consistency during the second half of the campaign, starting with a victory against Aston Villa on Boxing Day.
"We have to win our games and have confidence that we will be in the top four," the Dutch playmaker said in The Independent.
"There are a lot of good teams but we play well against the big teams and (against) some of the smaller clubs we have problems."
Van der Vaart scored both goals in Spurs' 2-1 success over Aston Villa at White Hart Lane in October and is looking forward to the away fixture.
He is anticipating a tough encounter but is convinced Tottenham, who are currently four points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea, will come out on top.
"I played there once with the national team against England," he said. "It's a nice stadium and they are a great team.
"I expect a difficult match but we're going to win."