Mauricio Pochettino has denied he pushed for a return to Tottenham in the summer but admits he still loves the club.
The Argentine was sacked almost exactly two years ago and is now manager of Paris Saint-Germain in France.
When Spurs were looking for a new head coach before the current campaign began, Pochettino was strongly linked (via The Athletic) with a return to N17 but ended up staying put in Paris.
The Londoners eventually appointed Nuno Espirito Santo, who was soon sacked and quickly replaced by Antonio Conte.
Such was the swiftness of Conte’s arrival, there was no time for Pochettino to be linked to Tottenham yet again – but if he had been, he probably wouldn’t admit it.
Speaking to The Observer, for the 49-year-old suggested he never commented on the summer rumours because he did not know where they came from.
“You never know from where these rumours appear and I am a person who doesn’t like to take advantage of these things,” Pochettino said.
“That’s why I didn’t talk. The people criticised me here in France, the media … ‘Why doesn’t Mauricio give his word about staying in Paris?’ But when you don’t create things, why am I going to say something? I don’t need to clarify things. Of course, I listened to everything. But, yes … never happened, that.”
He did admit, however, that driving Tottenham away was “maybe” the intention of the PSG board when they triggered an extension of his contract after the Spurs links.
Asked about Harry Kane, Pochettino said: “I love Tottenham fans and I love Tottenham and I am so happy that Harry is in Tottenham,” Pochettino says. “But I want the best for Harry and I want the best for Tottenham. That’s it, no?”
In any case, Tottenham must be more than happy with how things have developed, with Conte – one of Europe’s best coaches – now in charge.
But that’s not to say we should completely rule out a reunion with Pochettino in the years to come.