Antonio Conte accepts Chelsea will face an uphill battle to qualify for the Champions League if they fail to beat Tottenham.
Conte’s Premier League champions have been unable to mount a title defence this season and, with eight fixtures remaining, are fighting for a top-four finish alongside Spurs, Liverpool and Manchester United.
The Blues are five points adrift of their fourth-placed London rivals ahead of Sunday’s meeting at Stamford Bridge.
“For sure, this is an important game. An important game for us,” the head coach said.
“Our target for this final (stretch) of the season is to take a place in the Champions League and reach the final of the FA Cup and, this season, try and win it.
“If we win, we go very close to Tottenham. Otherwise, we continue to stay not so close and, with seven games to go, it will be difficult to take a place in the Champions League. (Although) nothing is impossible.
“We have to try to win every game, not to make a lot of mistakes, don’t drop points.
“It will be very important in this final (run) of the season.”