Football journalists have their say on Mauricio Pochettino’s future

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Just under six months ago, Tottenham Hotspur were in the final of the Champions League, the pinnacle of club football.

Not only were they beaten in the final by Liverpool, who have gone on to become a dominant force in the game, but the circumstances of that defeat were crushing.

Conceding a penalty and a goal inside two minutes, with a harsh handball call against Sissoko, really set the tone for the match.

Spurs were never able to recover and, despite Liverpool also being poor on the night, Tottenham were beaten 2-0 and the dream was over.

The Lilywhites now find themselves 14th in the Premier League with just three wins out of a possible 12, closer to relegation than the Champions League spots.

Leading football journalists are now answering whether Pochettino is the right man for the rebuild and whether he still has the stomach and the passion to lead Spurs (Sky Sports).

Jonathan Northcroft – Football Correspondent – Sunday Times: “The winning instinct they built up under Pochettino seems to have gone and I think that can only be down to the lack of commitment from some players – maybe a feeling that this ‘band of brothers’, well, the buy-in’s not quite there anymore.

“I think Pochettino has to take responsibility by talking about how he might [have walked] away [if Spurs had won the Champions League]. You almost have to start again after losing that.

“I wonder how much stomach he’s got to start again. It’s four, five players in or out.”

Oliver Holt – Chief Sports Writer – Mail on Sunday: “The crux is whether Pochettino has got the stomach for the fight. When he’s at his best and most passionate, he’s an incredibly inspiring manager.

“It’s so recent that they were in the Champions League final – such a massive achievement. For people to say he shouldn’t be there I find hard but he’s sent out mixed message himself so he is responsible.

“If he wants to be there, he can turn it around. If his heart’s not in it, it’s only a matter of time.”

Darren Lewis – Writer – Mirror: “Tottenham have been affected by the fact some players weren’t committing to the club and signing new contracts – Christian Eriksen, Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld.

“The instability around those three key players has affected the club.

“There’s been a lot of instability and their rebuild is only half-done. They brought in Tanguy Ndombele, Giovani Lo Celso but they still need more.

“I still think Pochettino is the right man . It’s ridiculous he’s under pressure because when you look at the wider context of what he’s done for the club, he’s kept them in the Champions League after so long with their noses pressed up against the glass.

“It would be a big, big call to throw him overboard. His situation, I think, is very different to the other managers under pressure.”

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