Pochettino hails “great victory”

Image: SpursWeb

Tottenham’s New Year’s Day annihilation of Chelsea will live long in the memory, but head coach Mauricio Pochettino is not getting carried by his side’s astonishing start to the year.

The former Argentina international arrived in the summer on a long-term deal, although the first few months of the former Southampton manager’s reign have been bumpier than many predicted.

Things have at last began to improve, though, and Spurs extended their unbeaten Premier League run to a sixth match in some style against Chelsea.

Harry Kane’s brace was complemented by efforts from Danny Rose, Andros Townsend and Nacer Chadli as the north Londoners ran out 5-3 victors against rivals at White Hart Lane.

“The most important thing today is to congratulate my players,” head coach Pochettino said. “It was a great day for us.

“There was a great atmosphere out on the pitch, and for our supporters to. It was a great victory.

“We deserved the victory and we were better than Chelsea.”

Asked where the win ranked in his career, the Spurs boss said: “For me, it’s only three points.

“I think it is a good victory against Chelsea, who I think are one of the best teams in the world.

“But this is nothing – in the end it’s only three points.”

This was, though, just the second time a Jose Mourinho-led side had shipped five goals and the first time Pochettino had got the better of the Portuguese.

“It was the first time after a lot of games in England and Spain,” the former Espanyol and Southampton boss said.

“For me, Mourinho is one of the best – or the best – manager in the world.

“I am not especially happy for myself, but for the team. It was an important three points for us to believe in our way.

“Mourinho is my friend but, in the end, it’s three points.”

Much of the credit for this astonishing win will deservedly fall at the feet of Kane, who made it six goals in as many matches.

An England senior call-up appears par for the course, but Pochettino does not want too much pressure falling on the striker too soon.

“We need to be careful with him,” he said. “He’s still young, but it’s impossible to hide him because of his performances.

“It’s not my decision [whether he gets called up]. We try to help him improve every day and if the national team manager believes in him and wants to give him the opportunity… it’s not my decision.”

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