Pochettino celebrates with snap

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Image: SpursWeb

Three points were not the only thing Mauricio Pochettino left Loftus Road with as the Tottenham head coach also brought home a new family photo for the mantelpiece.

Harry Kane’s match-winning brace at QPR helped Spurs close the gap on the top-four to three points on Saturday.

The 2-1 win in west London could prove vital in the chase for Champions League qualification and is a result Pochettino celebrated in unusual fashion, by approaching the away end to take a photo.

It was not just the sight of celebrating Spurs fans that led him over, though, as amongst them he picked out his sons, Sebastiano and Maurizio, and his brother Javier.

Javier works on the farm Pochettino grew up at back in Murphy, Argentina, but took time off to come over for last weekend’s Capital One Cup final against Chelsea.

He has stayed in England since then so to have him at Loftus Road with his sons made victory all the more special for the Spurs head coach.

“I took it as a souvenir,” Pochettino said. “It was a fantastic moment for me and for them. It was the first time I’ve done it in my career.

“My brother works on the farm. He enjoyed the final, but I don’t give him the chance to give me his opinion.

“He is very honest – sometimes too much! He’s six years older than me.

“He works on the farm we grew up on and he watches every game live, all the games are on in Argentina.”

Sebastiano and Maurizio, on the other hand, live in England, where they often prefer to forego the prawn sandwiches come game time.

Asked if they know the Harry Kane song, Pochettino said with a smile: “Yes.

“They have the chance to go to the executive box or be in a better area, but they prefer to sing the songs with the fans.”

Pochettino joked “maybe it’s difficult for you to guess” who their favourite player is, but it is not just 26-goal striker Kane they, like their dad, have been impressed by.

Spurs, at last, appear to be successfully blending home-grown talent such as Kane and Ryan Mason with big-money acquisitions – something the fans certainly seem to appreciate.

“I think the connection is special now,” Pochettino said. “At the beginning it was different, now it’s a reality and the connection between the team and the supporters is fantastic.

“It’s good because the team shows great character. The results make the supporters feel very proud of the team.”

It is not so long ago that the Tottenham fans were airing their frustration as Pochettino endured an frustrating start to life at the helm.

The former Southampton manager bemoaned his players’ mental frailty early in his tenure, but that is something they appear to have overcome.

“I think we’ve proved that the team has a strong mentality and we’ve improved in this area, as well as a tactical and physical state,” Pochettino said.

“In a mental state we are much better now than at the end of the season. We feel the team has improved.”

Mental strength is just as key at the other end of the table – something QPR counterpart Chris Ramsey is hammering home to his players.

The Hoops are three points from safety after a seventh loss in eight top-flight matches, making results in the next three games against Crystal Palace, Everton and West Brom all the more important.

“Obviously they are going to be having the same problems we’ve got,” Ramsey said.

“If we can capitalise on the things that have put them in that situation, then I think we will start moving up the table.

“But we really do need to capitalise on their weaknesses.”

Asked if those three matches will determine QPR’s fate, Ramsey retorted: “No. Because you have to go to the end. Of course you do. You have to go to the end.

“I am sure that everybody at the club will be fighting until the end.”

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