Pochettino: “Wenger the last of a dying breed”

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

According to an article by ESPN Mauricio Pochettino said Arsene Wenger is the last of a dying breed of old-school managers as English football moves towards a European model.

Wenger has established near-total control of all aspects of the club in the 21 years at the helm and the longest-serving manager in English football signed a new two-year contract last summer, although his power has begun to weaken as of late.

By contrast, Pochettino’s influence has grown since he joined Spurs in May 2014 but he has said he will never be at leisure to decide when he leaves the club, unlike Wenger or former Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

He believes English football’s move away from the values that made it a “paradise” has in turn weakened managers’ positions, that despite club chairman Daniel Levy has been one of the biggest advocates of a European model.

“It’s difficult [to be like Wenger],” Pochettino said ahead of the north London derby. “For different reasons, it is tough. Maybe we are talking about one of the last managers to be able to apply this power over everything in a football club: Pochettino said.

He added: “The owners are different these days. Before, England was a little bit of a paradise for football. It was unique: there was respect for projects, for people, respect for managers, and even when I arrived at Southampton five years ago, it was still there.

Pochettino also added: “But now the owners are different. When English football started to integrate more with European football, England started to share the Latin culture more. And in the last few years, everything that has happened in the English game is similar to what would happen in another European country.”

We lost 2-0 at the Emirates Stadium in November however Pochettino is yet to lose a league derby to Wenger at home and he is hoping to extend that record at Wembley this weekend.

The article goes on to say that after a slow start at Wembley Spurs have won eight of their last nine games at the national stadium and victory against the auld enemy would follow impressive home wins over Borussia Dortmund, Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester United.

“It was difficult at the beginning,” Pochettino said. “It’s like when you move house. You’re born and you grow up all your life in a house and after 20 years you move to another house. You need time to adapt to everything.The first few nights you don’t sleep because everything is completely different. It’s a new house but it’s not your home. Now we start to feel that it’s home, when before it was just a new house.

He added: “For the fans, it’s the same. It’s difficult to adapt for the fans because they’re so spread out and they were always in the same place all their life, with the same people next to you, in the same bar before the game. We are creatures of habit.”

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