After Tottenham were knocked out of the FA Cup by Crystal Palace last month, Mauricio Pochettino was criticised for fielding a weakend team.
The Argentine hit back insisting that finishing in the top four on a consistent basis was more important for the club’s future than winning a domestic trophy (Guardian).
This comment didn’t sit well with many experts an pundits who questioned the 46-year-old’s mentality. However, former Tottenham first team coach Steffen Freund has backed Pochettino’s comments and said that the Argentine is doing his job by finishing in the top four.
Freund was a fan favourite during his time in North London as a player and returned as a coach in 2012. The German worked under Andre Villas-Boas, Tim Sherwood as well as Pochettino for a year.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Freund said that Tottenham’s priority was to qualify for the Champions League if they wanted to keep their best players and generate enough money to compete with the other big clubs.
He said: “I won silverware several times and I remember every moment. It is special for everyone because you feel it, but I have changed my view.
“Football is now more of a business and, in England, Spurs, are No 6 financially. Others are stronger and Mauricio’s job is to be in the top four, so they can have more money from the Champions League, and keep the best players and the coach.
“And, I have to say it, they are above Arsenal. When we finished fifth with Andre, you could feel the pressure on the last day because if we won and Arsenal drew we were in the Champions League, above them. Mauricio has done it. That’s why the supporters are happy.”
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