Tuesday 17 September 2019

'The club need to change my title' - Mauricio Pochettino's frustration at Tottenham in full view once again

Mauricio Pochettino called on Spurs to act like a big club this summer (Mike Egerton/PA)
Mauricio Pochettino called on Spurs to act like a big club this summer (Mike Egerton/PA)
Kevin Palmer

Kevin Palmer

Mauricio Pochettino has left little doubt that he is unimpressed with the Tottenham's transfer activity this summer, after suggesting he is not in control of any facet of the club's player recruitment plans.

While Spurs manager Pochettino made similar claims earlier in 2019, the comments after his side's Audi Cup win over Real Madrid in Munich appear to have been particularly pointed.

Tottenham broke their transfer record to sign Tanguy Ndombele from Lyon earlier this month, but Pochettino was believed to be keen to push for a deal to bring Paulo Dybala to the club before Manchester United beat Spurs to the punch to strike a swap deal that will see striker Romelu Lukaku move to Turin.

With a little over a week to go in the transfer window, Pochettino's future at Tottenham could come under scrutiny once again after these latest comments, as he left little doubt over his powerless role at the helm of the club.

"I am not in charge and I know nothing about the situation of my players," he told reporters.

"I am only coaching them and trying to get the best from them. Sell, buy players, sign contract, not sign contract - I think it is not in my hands, it's in the club's hands and (chairman) Daniel Levy.

"The club need to change my title and description. Of course I am the boss deciding the strategic play, but in another area I don't know. Today, I feel like I am the coach."

Pochettino, who has previously intimated frustration with his club's transfer policy, watched as Harry Kane's first-half strike proved enough to see them past Zinedine Zidane's side.

Kane intercepted a wayward back-pass by Marcelo after 22 minutes and slotted what turned out to be the winner past Keylor Navas.

Rose and Christian Eriksen both started for Spurs despite recent transfer speculation, while Gareth Bale was left in Spain purportedly due to illness.

Real striker Rodrygo saw a goal disallowed for offside before fellow teenager Troy Parrott almost grabbed Tottenham's second in the dying moments but saw his low shot strike the post.

The result continues Real Madrid's miserable pre-season, with pressure already mounting on Zidane in a week that saw his effort to force the club to sell Gareth Bale end in failure, with the Welshman's move to China falling through.

Bale did not play against his former club Tottenham and Zidane offered up this explanation: "Why did not Bale travel? Because he did not feel well and after talking with the doctors it was better to stay in Madrid.

"He stayed training there. It's a joint decision, made by the doctors and me, and I spoke with him, that's all."

It remains to be seen whether Zidane, Bale and Real Madrid can work together after all that has gone on in the last few weeks and if the head coach was to leave his post, an evidently unhappy Pochettino would be the red-hot favourite to replace him.

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