Spurs travel to Swansea this evening knowing that a win will keep their faint hopes of a possible title win alive. Although Chelsea remain firm favourites for the league crown, Spurs' presence in the title race for a second successive season shows that progression under Mauricio Pochettino is well under way at White Hart Lane. As previously written, Spurs are currently seven points better off than they were this time last season after 29 games, but find themselves seven points off the top spot compared to just five points last year. It's evident that the only thing this Spurs side lacks is a trophy as concrete proof of this aforementioned "progress". And while we shouldn't get too far ahead of ourselves, isn't it about time we truly appreciated how good a manager we have, while admitting to ourselves that trophies and titles are only a matter of when not if under Pochettino? The Special One When appointed Spurs boss back in May 2014, Mauricio Pochettino's message to supporters was that "we [the club] will do everything to make you proud." And in less than three years the Argentinian has transformed us from a side with an outside chance of Champions League football to a side that is expected to challenge for titles and trophies. But why isn't that enough for some? Much of the current criticism aimed at Pochettino (for not winning a trophy) is down to his own success as a coach. He has overseen a change at Spurs that many before him could only dream of, even when provided with greater tools. To focus on the last 15 years’ worth of managers — our aim under Glenn Hoddle, Jacques Santini and Martin Jol was Uefa Cup (now Europa League) football, this evolved into a coveted fourth-place Champions League spot when under the tutelage of Juande Ramos, Harry Redknapp, Andre Villas-Boas and Tim Sherwood. Yet under Pochettino our sights are set even higher. To think 10 years ago (the 2006-07 season) we finished in fifth place, a total of 29 points behind champions Manchester United. Now, we are expected to finish at least second. Of course, Pochettino is yet to win a trophy at Spurs, and trophy talk will always play a part in judging a manager's success. But in my opinion Pochettino is in the process of finalising a team that will consistently challenge for titles. Better still, Pochettino is the first manager I can remember at Spurs who has brought an identity to our way of play. It goes without saying that many other teams and managers admire how we do things (whether that be through wanting Pochettino himself or his players), so why aren't we, the fans, recognising what Pochettino has achieved so far at the club? The 45-year-old is the first manager under chairman Daniel Levy to earn a contract extension at White Hart Lane and this was thoroughly deserved. We have played the best football in the division over the past 18 months, while that "Spursy" label is (just about) a thing of the past — and we are doing it all with a young, English core. The players at the club now (compared to those present when Pochettino first joined) play with passion, pride and purpose. Additionally, nearly all of these players see their foreseeable future at White Hart Lane and have signed new deals. I can't remember a time when White Hart Lane was last filled with so much promise. And this all stems from a young, talented manager who has forged and coached a team in a little under three years. The Lucky One? As well as the excellent changes made by Pochettino at Spurs (personnel, mentality, tactics, organisation, staff structure etc.), the landscape of the Premier League has undoubtedly changed since the Argentine settled in north London. Factors include the ending of the Manchester United-Alex Ferguson dynasty and the Premier League TV deal — ensuring no one team is dominant in the league and clubs don't always have to sell when an offer is on the table. Has then, Pochettino been lucky to come to the right place (White Hart Lane) at the right time (in the history of the Premier League), where the title can possibly be won by up to eight teams, rather than the atypical four teams (Chelsea/United/City/Arsenal). And has Pochettino benefitted from a "golden ticket" when it comes to this current crop of players — most of whom he has inherited. The Premier League is said to be weaker than it was 10-15 years ago, but to relate to the old footballing cliché "you can only beat what's in front of you", Pochettino can only manage Tottenham based on the very environment in which they currently exist within. But say Pochettino was our boss during the 2011-12 season, with the likes of Gareth Bale, Luka Modric, Rafael van der Vaart, Ledley King and (an in-from) Emmanuel Adebayor at his disposal. Would he better that season's fourth-place finish. My guess: yes, certainly. It really is impossible to look past Pochettino's talents — with Spurs on the rise, the manager is the key factor in everything great about the club at present. To think our previous boss is now director of football at League One relegation-battlers Swindon Town shows how badly things could've gone if Pochettino hadn't been hired in May 2014. And to think many fans (including myself) thought Frank de Boer was the answer? The One we've got to keep It is frequently said that the league table never lies at the end of the season. And when it comes to using league position to judge the managerial talent for this season, I'd have to agree. Antonio Conte and Mauricio Pochettino (who I'm sure will finish first and second with their clubs) are the two best managers in the Premier League. But the difference is that one is at a club where the standard for success has been in place for numerous years, while the other is leading his club to heights not achieved for over 60 years. But with uncertainty around the new stadium and our inability to compete financially with the likes of City, Chelsea and United full stop, will Pochettino eventually outgrow Tottenham? He is satisfied here at present, but he ditched Southampton when the time was right, so will the same happen to us in due course? One can only speculate (as the tabloids so often do with all things relating to Tottenham's impending doom). But when a player like Hugo Lloris — our captain — admits his future is "tied to Pochettino's", you begin to wonder if the players would opt for loyalty to Pochettino over loyalty to Spurs. And even though this level of trust can only improve matters on the pitch, should Tottenham ever suffer a Pochettino exit anytime soon, it may equate to a Spurs side in turmoil. It's said that no individual is bigger than the football club, but when that club is onto bigger and better things because of that very individual, perhaps all you can do is sit back, relax and let the man do his work.