Tottenham Hotspur defender Vedran Corluka believes the club must strengthen this summer or fall further behind the current top four.
After an impressive debut season in the Champions League, Spurs have failed to qualify for next season's premier European club competition and now have a challenge on their hands to overhaul Manchester City and regain a place in the elite tournament.
"Some teams invested more money than us in players and this year we didn't make the cut," the Croatian international defender told Sky Sports News.
"We've showed in some games we can compete with them. But next season will be tough if we don't strengthen our team like they will."
The Europa League is likely to be scant consolation for the White Hart Lane outfit, with many pundits believing a Thursday-Sunday schedule can hinder the club's efforts of returning to the top of the Barclays Premier League rather than be of benefit.
Corluka admits it's a disappointing outcome after the season started with such promise, but hopes the club can build on the positives ahead of another campaign.
"We are disappointed because we expected, after a season in the Champions League, to play in the Champions League again. We enjoyed it very much. Of course there's disappointment in the club and around the players as well but that's football. The Premier League is a tough league," the defender continued.
"Hopefully next year we will be in the top four again."
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