Belfast Telegraph

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino still in contact with Sir Alex Ferguson

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino says he still exchanges texts with Sir Alex Ferguson but will not be speaking to the Scot ahead of Sunday's game against Manchester United.

Pochettino prompted speculation about his future when he met Ferguson for lunch in London last summer while in negotiations over a new contract at Spurs.

United had reportedly included Pochettino on their shortlist of potential replacements for Louis van Gaal but the club chose Jose Mourinho to take over and Pochettino signed a new five-year-deal at White Hart Lane.

Ferguson remains a friend and mentor of Pochettino's and the Argentinian admits they do still keep in touch.

"No, no I will not speak with him before the game," Pochettino said.

"My relationship with him was, I explain last season and yes, we cross some texts but my expectation is not to talk with him before the game."

United will fall nine points behind Tottenham in the table if they lose to them at Old Trafford on Sunday.

It has been a disappointing start to the campaign for a club that spent more than £150million on new players in the summer while Spurs forked out less than half that amount.

There remains a large gap between the commercial muscle of each club but Pochettino believes Tottenham are moving in the right direction.

"We are doing a big effort to try to reduce on the pitch that gap," Pochettino said.

"It's true too our chairman, our board are trying to work hard to reduce the gap by building a new stadium, new facilities like here in the next few years.

"Tottenham is showing their ambition to be a team or club to be one of the biggest in Europe and in England."

United are expected to splash the cash again in January while Tottenham are unlikely to complete much business as the club are wary of bringing in players mid-season.

Pochettino says signing key players up to new contracts is a more positive indication of progress.

"January is always difficult to find the right profile to help you," Pochettino said.

"Always when you bring players from outside always there is not too much time for that player to settle in your club and your philosophy, for many reasons.

"It will be difficult to find the profile that can help us but the club is doing a very good job to extend contracts of key players.

"That is how we can show our real ambition and how the players show their commitment with us, that's a bigger statement for the club, to show our ambition for the future."

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