Pochettino accepts Wembley stay has hurt Spurs’ progress

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino accepts that his club’s extended stay at Wembley has affected the team.

Pochettino accepts Wembley stay has hurt Spurs’ progress

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino accepts that his club’s extended stay at Wembley has affected the team.

Spurs still have no date for the move into their new stadium and are booked into their temporary home for all of their games in February.

Cardiff City and Arsenal players observe a minute’s silence last night for the Argentinian Emiliano Sala, who went missing on January 21 after a light aircraft he was travelling in from Nantes to Cardiff disappeared over the English Channel. Picture: Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA.
Cardiff City and Arsenal players observe a minute’s silence last night for the Argentinian Emiliano Sala, who went missing on January 21 after a light aircraft he was travelling in from Nantes to Cardiff disappeared over the English Channel. Picture: Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA.

An announcement on some potential test event dates is fairly imminent, but in the meantime, attendances at Wembley have dwindled and another low crowd is expected when they host Watford on Wednesday.

The Argentinian, though, has launched a rallying cry.

“Our thought was to play in September from the beginning of the season in the new stadium and now we are in February and we don’t know if we are going to play there,” Pochettino said.

“Of course, it is a massive disappointment for everybody. First of all for Daniel (Levy) and the board, that they cannot deliver the job on time.

“Then you can see for our fans at Wembley every week that things are going down and down and down because people are disappointed with the situation.

“And of course, that affects the team and everybody. That is why it is my responsibility to be positive and optimistic.

“My job is to call to the fans to give the last push that we need. The club needs the help of the fans because they are the core and the soul of the club and this is a massive moment.

“I know I can ask for more, but all together we need the last push to finish in the top four or maybe be a real contender.

Then, playing in the Champions League is an exciting moment for the club.

Pochettino also vowed to “stick with the club” until they achieve all of their goals, having also claimed he is a victim of his own success.

Pochettino, the man who Man United want to become their next manager, has received criticism for not backing up his impressive work at Spurs by winning trophies.

They crashed out of both the Carabao Cup and the FA Cup within four days of each other last week, which led him to say again that finishing in the top four is a bigger priority for his club.

Yesterday, Pochettino staged a passionate defence of the job he has done at Spurs, insisting he has over-achieved on the club’s brief to take them in the Champions League by the time they moved into their new stadium.

“I love my job, I love my job. And of course I love a big challenge,” he said.

“I am a very positive person and I am going to try and deliver in my job. I am going to going to stick with the club until the end to help the club achieve all they want.

“When I arrived at Tottenham I knew very well the challenge will be tough and what happens now will happen now. We are victims of our own success, the club was in a different level. No-one believed in us, no-one believed the way we operated from the beginning will bring success to the club.

“Of course club played once in 22 years in the Champions League and now after four years we played three times in a row — that was the dream of our fans, our staff and players to play in Champions League.

“The principal thing that we need to clarify, our fans need to know, when you ask me if I agree to win a domestic cup will help us to achieve the last level, I cannot agree.

“In the last four or five years we played in four semi-finals, one final, I think we try, we were there, we were close, and in last three seasons, we are consistently playing Champions League, be in the top four.

“We are so close, we need to try to keep working, the fans that are not happy, of course with perspective in the future they are going to appreciate the job everyone is doing at this football club.

“Right now, we are focused on trying to win every game in every competition, but for different reasons we are still missing something that means we cannot deliver.”

He added:

We cannot underestimate all the club is doing in the last few years, or this group of players and staff, because we have been competing with all the circumstances in last four years, the people thinking we are real contenders, that we have capacity to compete against big sides, fighting is a massive prize, not criticism and I take it as a positive.

“It’s a moment to explain a little bit more the big picture. It’s so important because sometimes the people can get confused. I am not going to complain, I am going to translate the reality, the fans want the reality. Then other people want to give their opinion from outside.”

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