Mauricio Pochettino has briefed the media ahead of Tottenham’s crucial Premier League meeting with Newcastle United on Wednesday night.
Spurs need at least four points from their final two games to finish above Chelsea and qualify for the Champions for a third successive season.
A number of topics were on the agenda at the press conference. Here are three things we learned.
Vertonghen is fine, but Dier and Dembele are out
Jan Vertonghen has recovered quickly from the ankle injury he sustained in Saturday’s defeat to West Brom and is available for selection.
Unfortunately, Eric Dier is ill and will miss the game, and Mousa Dembele is still feeling the effects of the twisted ankle he suffered against Watford last week.
Pochettino might be tempted to throw Moussa Sissoko in against his former side, although Vertonghen’s availability means Spurs could deploy a back three again, which will make up for the lack of midfielders.
This season has been “amazing” in context
Pochettino thinks the team has done brilliantly to be in with a chance of finishing third despite having to play their home games at Wembley all season.
“If you analyse all in context I think it’s an amazing season – to have the possibility with two games left to finish third, I think it’s massively successful,” he said (via Ham&High).
“But I understand people want more. We want more. We’re ambitious.”
Pochettino’s sent a message of support Sir Alex Ferguson
The Argentinian was keen to mention the former Manchester United manager, who recently underwent surgery on a brain haemorrhage.
“It was very sad news for us on Saturday, and for everyone that loves football and loves him,” he said (via Ham&High). “My thoughts are with him and with his family.
“I hope that he will recover as soon as possible. Of course it’s very, very sad news but I think we are now more optimistic about him.”