Mauricio Pochettino was heading back to the training pitch on the morning of his 43rd birthday as he quickly looked to put Tottenham’s Capital One Cup final defeat to Chelsea behind him.
Pochettino failed to deliver Spurs their first trophy in seven years on Sunday as Chelsea ran out 2-0 winners at Wembley thanks to John Terry’s strike and an own goal from Kyle Walker.
Pochettino refused to dwell on the defeat for too long though.
After speaking of his pride at watching Tottenham run Chelsea close, he was already discussing returning to the training field with his players at the club’s multi-million pound facility in Enfield.
With a top-four place within touching distance, the Spurs boss knows he must move on quickly and rally his men for Wednesday’s home game against Swansea.
“No, I do not change my plans. Training,” he said bluntly when asked if the defeat had ruined his birthday.
“The challenge, now, is the next game.
“We must concentrate on Swansea. We need to move forward, forget the final, refresh our legs and minds.
“I’m never happy on my birthday. It’s because I am one year older. It’s difficult after 40 years, no?”
Pochettino’s men controlled large parts of the first half but failed to score.
The closest they came was when Christian Eriksen curled a free-kick over the wall and on to the bar in the 13th minute.
Pochettino insisted he was proud of his team’s performance, though, and predicted a bright future for himself and his players.
“We need to improve and learn. We will do from this final. This group has a very (bright) future,” he said.
“We have more positives than negatives in this final
“For us, it’s one step forward because the team is very young.
“For many players, it was the first final. Before the game, when we were on the pitch, I asked Harry (Kane) if it was his first time at Wembley and he said ‘yes’.”
Pochettino, who took charge last summer following a turbulent period which saw four managers sacked in six years, took personal encouragement from the words of his opposite number Jose Mourinho, who insisted the Argentinian will win trophies in his career.
“I say thank you Jose,” Pochettino said.
“He is a good guy and is very kind to me.
“I admire him. He is one of the best in the world.
“The next time (I am here) I’ll come in first.”
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