Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has asked Spurs fans impatient for a first trophy since 2008 to grant him more time to deliver silverware.
Pochettino has improved the north Londoners since taking charge in 2014 but, despite rivalling Leicester for the Premier League last term, is yet to deliver honours.
Spurs must overturn a 1-0 deficit against Gent on Thursday evening at Wembley to keep their Europa League hopes intact and Pochettino insists his project remains a work in progress.
“We are in that process, to try to build a very good squad to try to fight with the big sides to win titles,” he said.
“In a short period you cannot do it – only if you have enough money to buy the best players in the world. Then you maybe don’t need much time. But the process we are in and our philosophy, we need time.”
Pochettino suggested it may not be until Tottenham open their new 61,000-seater stadium, slated for the 2018-19 season, that they can expect to compete with the biggest clubs.
“We are building a new stadium. That process always is a tough period for every club,” he added. “Then the club has the tools to try to fight with the big sides in the Champions League.”
Pochettino has billed Thursday’s last 32 second leg against Gent as “another final”, having slipped to an uncharacteristically sluggish defeat in Belgium last week.
The Argentine is expected to select another strong starting XI, despite using a largely first-choice team in the first leg and for Sunday’s 3-0 FA Cup fifth-round win at Fulham.