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United in for Europa League shock – Pochettino

Tottenham coach Mauricio Pochettino has warned Manchester United they face a shock attempting to juggle Europa League and Premier League commitments.

United were eliminated at the Champions League group stage after they were beaten 3-2 by Group B winners Wolfsburg and PSV saw off CSKA Moscow on Tuesday.

Louis van Gaal and Co. are set to compete in the Europa League for the first time since 2011-12 and Pochettino said the Manchester club are in for a culture shock as they prepare for Thursday fixtures.

“It’s a big, big difference,” said Pochettino, whose Tottenham can win their Europa League group if they draw with Monaco on Thursday.

“When you play Thursday and Sunday, it can affect the mentality and the psychology of the players. Thursday night, [long] travel and you need to play Sunday afternoon. Always for the player it affects them.

“Football is [supposed to be] Saturday three o’clock. It will be tough for them.”

Pochettino added: “In Spain, for example, the clubs use the local competition to give players rest and recovery from the Champions League. For us it’s impossible. The Premier League is the toughest competition, this is the reality.

“Last weekend, Liverpool went to Newcastle and lost, Chelsea played Bournemouth and lost, Manchester City lost in Stoke — in Spain that wouldn’t happen.”

Thu 10 Dec, 2015
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