Paul Merson has claimed that Liverpool now have a similar problem to the one Tottenham faced under Mauricio Pochettino, with the Reds being unable to make signings who would improve their starting eleven. 

A lot has been written and said about Pochettino not being backed by the Tottenham hierarchy at the right time, with many putting the sour ending to the project down to the lack of investment in the first-team squad.

Mauricio Pochettino

FRANCK FIFE / AFP) (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Spurs were in a transitionary phase during that time as the new stadium was being built and the club did invest significantly ahead of their first full season at the 62,850 venue, snapping up Tanguy Ndombele, Giovani Lo Celso, Jack Clarke and Ryan Sessegnon in the summer of 2019.

Unfortunately, Pochettino was sacked just a few months later and replaced by Jose Mourinho – an experiment which had disastrous results.

Jurgen Klopp, who is the current longest-serving manager in the Premier League, also seemingly finds himself at a crossroads at the moment, with Liverpool looking a shadow of their usual selves in the first half of this season.

The Reds have made the first big move ahead of the January transfer window, snapping up Cody Gakpo from PSV Eindhoven but Merson believes they will struggle to get into the top four this season.

The former Arsenal midfielder told  Soccer Special on Sky Sports (26/12/22) about Liverpool: “It’s hard going into the market, you aren’t going to win the Premier League this season and you need to stay in the Champions League, that’s where the money is.

“It’s so hard. Arsenal have the same thing. You sort of get into that Tottenham situation, of Tottenham four years ago when they were right at the top of their game and they didn’t buy anybody because their first XI was unbelievable and you thought ‘how could I go out and buy him because he’s not going to get a game.’

“I think they need to go out and buy. I don’t think they are a shoo-in for the top-four with this team, at the moment, and with the injuries.”

Spurs Web Opinion

Levy deserves criticism for not backing Pochettino at the end of the 2016-17 season as we were pretty close to doing something special with that team. 

However, we are not privy to internal conversations and it is quite possible that the Spurs chairman had made it clear to the Argentine that there would not be much in the way of funds available at the time due to the stadium transition.

What most people ignore is the fact that the club backed Pochettino massively with the signings he asked for in the summer of 2019 and even agreed on a big-money deal for Dybala late in the window only for it to collapse due to image rights issues.

That transfer window was a disaster for the club as Pochettino’s targets (Ndombele and Lo Celso) failed miserably and there is no reason to think Dybala would have also not been a disaster, given his subsequent career trajectory.

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