Monday, December 16, 2019

Pochettino to discuss Tottenham future after Champions League final

SoccerNews in UEFA Champions League 11 May 2019

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Mauricio Pochettino will delay talks with chairman Daniel Levy over his future as Tottenham manager until after next month’s Champions League final.

Spurs booked their place in the June 1 showpiece with an incredible comeback victory against Ajax in midweek, as they recovered from three goals down on aggregate at half-time to progress through 3-3 on away goals.

Pochettino, previously linked with the Manchester United and Real Madrid jobs, hinted ahead of the match in Amsterdam that he would consider quitting the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium if his players pulled off a “miracle” and lifted the famous trophy.

And after keeping alive Tottenham’s hopes of winning their first piece of European silverware since going all the way in the 1983-84 UEFA Cup, the 47-year-old fell short of committing himself to another season in north London until he meets face-to-face with Levy.

“After five years, I will repeat, after five years, it’s a moment to close a chapter,” he said at Friday’s news conference. “It’s not going to be the same on July 1 or 6 or 7 when we start the pre-season. It’s so important to have a clear idea of the project, the challenge that we’re going to have ahead of us.

“It was very clear five years ago that the priority was always going to be the stadium being finished and finishing the facilities here at the training ground. We feel so proud because our capacity to manage the situation – that is very difficult, how it affects the football side at different clubs is amazing.

“To have this capacity to manage both and after five years be successful, because for the first time in our history Tottenham is going to play a Champions League final and to finish the best stadium in the world. It’s a massive success. That’s why we feel so proud of these five years. But what is next? What next? That’s the question.

“What next and how we explain to you and what you translate to our fans, what we want for the future of our club. Of course you know it’s difficult for me to explain that. It’s a conversation with Daniel, I need to listen to Daniel, he’s the boss, the owner. I need to know what I explain to you and you translate to our fans.”

Pochettino hailed his players as “superheroes” following the 3-2 win in Amsterdam, with a second-half hat-trick from Lucas Moura setting up a meeting with Premier League rivals Liverpool in the final.

Speaking two days on from that famous Triumph, the Argentinian manager said: “The players, the staff, all the people who cannot put a face on but they are there working a lot. I want to reward them with our words because all that we suffer to arrive and live this dream and this happiness today at this amazing club, it’s priceless.

“Until today it was so clear. Our ambition brought us to play a final of the Champions League. No-one believed, if we said five years ago, in five years we are going to open the best stadium in the world and play the quarter-final and semi-final of the Champions League at our new stadium and then play in the final of the Champions League, you would say ‘what do you drink? I want the same’. 

“But today it is reality. It’s reality because of our ambition, our capacity, the effort, that is why I’m not tired to repeat that our players are heroes. They need to feel the love from everyone at the club, of course our fans because of all the effort we are doing. 

“With all the money to win trophies, to live this type of moment, that’s why I broke down and started to cry. It was an amazing moment. When you go back, we had very small dreams, but when you achieve one of the biggest dreams of your life, it’s difficult to keep inside. 

“That’s why now it’s a moment to enjoy, finish in the best way and play Sunday and prepare for the final, which will be an amazing moment for all our fans. After the final it will be a time to talk a lot and listen. What next?”

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