Friedel dismisses suggestions that Tottenham are feeling the pressure

The American goalkeeper has encouraged Spurs to go out and "enjoy and express themselves" and points out that football was put into perspective against Bolton on Saturday
Brad Friedel has dismissed suggestions that the pressure is getting to Tottenham after they dropped to fourth place following a 1-1 draw against Stoke City.

Rafael van der Vaart's late goal saved Spurs from a fourth straight defeat in the Premier League but was not enough to prevent Arsenal from climbing into third place.

Friedel has reminded his team-mates that football is just a game and that they witnessed what real pressure was when Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest during their abandoned FA Cup tie against Bolton Wanderers.

"Football is not pressure," Friedel told the London Evening Standard. "It might be for some, if you want to heap the pressure on then that's you as an individual person. But you play football, it's a game.

"We want to play well, we want to win but we all saw here last Saturday what pressure was. I've got three kids and raising them is far more pressure than a football match."

The American goalkeeper urged his teammates to relax and play with freedom ahead of their vital clash with Chelsea in the race for a top-four finish.

"I don't think it's about holding your nerve, it's about going out and enjoying yourself and expressing yourself because those are the type of players we have," Friedel insisted.

"It's continuing what we've been doing all season long. Sometimes you can play very poorly and win a game and then nobody says anything.

"But we've been playing really good football without getting the results we want.

"I'm not concerned at all and we will go into the Chelsea game confident, expecting a good result."