Belfast Telegraph

Mauricio Pochettino insists commitment to Tottenham has never wavered

The Argentinian is one year into a fresh five-year contract.

Mauricio Pochettino insists he is committed to Tottenham (Peter Byrne/PA)
Mauricio Pochettino insists he is committed to Tottenham (Peter Byrne/PA)

By Jonathan Veal, PA

Mauricio Pochettino has turned down a number of job offers from elsewhere during his five years at the Tottenham helm, but insists his commitment to the club has never wavered.

Pochettino’s success in leading Spurs to the top of the English game, spending a fraction of what other clubs have spent, has seen him coveted for some top jobs, both in England and abroad.

Chairman Daniel Levy rejected an approach from Real Madrid last summer while Chelsea and most recently Manchester United also put him at the top of their shortlist.

Pochettino’s future has come into the spotlight again this week amid speculation he is planning on walking away from Spurs after this weekend’s north London derby against Arsenal whatever the result.

The Argentinian, who is one year into a fresh five-year contract, was baffled by the “stupidity” of the rumour and reiterated his contentment at being at Spurs.

Asked whether he had ever been tempted by the “plenty” of offers to leave Spurs, he replied: “No. No because last year when I signed the contract here it was because I wanted to help the club to finish the stadium, to move into the stadium.

“That was my personal commitment with Daniel. In this moment one year ago it would have been easy to say, ‘OK, we’ve been here four years, let’s find another challenge and move on’, because always people at Tottenham will remember us very nicely.

“But we showed our commitment with the club and personally with Daniel because we knew it was going to be a difficult summer, impossible to sign players, impossible to move players and we had to keep the same squad while trying to deliver the job.

“(There have been) plenty. Plenty in five years and Daniel knows. From everywhere.

“Daniel knows very well how our commitment with the club is. It’s massive, it’s more than what is normal.

“But it’s normal that different managers for sure, if you ask (Pep) Guardiola, if you ask (Jurgen) Klopp, if you so ask the best managers…For sure Guardiola is working in City and receives a call from a different club.

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Mauricio Pochettino held clear-the-air talks with chairman Levy on Thursday (Mike Egerton/PA)

“Or like Klopp or like a different manager. It does not make it special to me.”

Pochettino has cut a frustrated figure this season, regularly distancing himself from issues at the club and unhappy at how his squad has been affected by the late closure of the European transfer window.

He held clear-the-air talks with chairman Levy on Thursday night and is ready to move on and attack the new season.

“It was a very good exercise to have better communication, to make clear the things,” he said of his dinner with Levy, his assistant Jesus Perez and a fourth unnamed club official.

“Always the intention was to help the club. The intention in my posture or my speech or my decision was always to try to make the best for the club.

I am very happy to be here Mauricio Pochettino

“There were no personal intentions. It was always trying to help the club, help the team, that is our principle objective and it was good to listen from Daniel that we are on the same page, that is the most important.

“But now we need to try to push again. That is why we need to be on the same page – the club, Daniel and us in our vision and plans for the future.

“I only tried to explain the situation, it is because I care about the club and Daniel and our personal relationship. It’s not because I am a coach and if I am here I am here and if we don’t I get sacked and go home.

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Pochettino says he had a good chat with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy (Mike Egerton/PA)

“The fact I have a four-year contract, or more is not the point.

“I am very happy to be here, very proud.

“Five years ago we signed for and started a project at a very different club – and now we are one of the best clubs in the world.

“We have played in the final of the Champions League and now the aim is to remain competitive for the future.”

PA

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