Pochettino: Stars not for sale


Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino has said he will fight to keep hold of his most sought-after stars this summer.

Spurs are now seven points adrift of the top four and are unlikely to therefore qualify for next season’s Champions League.

That could lead to a host of clubs circling around the likes of Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen and Christian Eriksen, with top goalscorer Harry Kane also likely to attract attention in the coming months.

But Pochettino, whose side face Manchester City on Sunday, insists he will do everything he can to keep hold of his talent and not see them leave in a similar fashion to Luka Modric or Gareth Bale have in recent years.

“In football it is difficult – if you sign the contract you never have the guarantee,” he said.

“I have a contract, or a lot of managers have a contract, and there is never a guarantee. But in football you never know but it is true, personally, if I want some player to stay with us I will fight a lot to keep him.”

When asked specifically about the future of goalkeeper Lloris, Pochettino dismissed reports linking the Frenchman with a move away from White Hart Lane.

“It is a rumour, like with other players, so I have no comment about that,” he said.

“I don’t want to speak about rumours. The rumour from you or from another player. We are focused on trying to finish the season as well as possible. That is a rumour that is impossible to stop but we need to accept it is part of the game.

“I don’t know if we need big changes. Always you can improve your squad and your game. We need to work hard to try to improve our game and our squad.”

Pochettino would have gone into his first season at Spurs hoping to break into the top four but admits their current position of sixth is more realistic given their financial power – even if he does not link spending with automatic success.

“You need to take the right decisions,” he added.

“It is not only if you pay money, you assure that you achieve something. The key is to take the right decisions, not just to invest money.

“We need to take the right decisions, it is not about money but about the right profile, the right position to build the right squad. This is our job now.

“To be fair, in football all things can happen but if we analyse the whole club maybe our position is realistic. It is the reality.”

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