Mauricio Pochettino has thanked Moussa Sissoko for his professionalism after Tottenham beat Newcastle United to secure Champions League qualification on Wednesday night.

Sissoko was handed a start against his former club with Eric Dier and Mousa Dembele both absent through injury.

Pochettino could have changed the system and played Toby Alderweireld in a back three, but his decision to put Sissoko in demonstrated the faith he has in the Frenchman.

The 28-year-old, who joined Spurs for £30 million in the summer of 2016, didn’t have the best of nights.

But he was arguably no worse than anyone else on the pitch as Tottenham hobbled over the line to qualify for the Champions League for a third successive season.

After the game, Pochettino was keen to single out Sissoko for his professionalism throughout the campaign.

“I am so proud about all the players because today for me one of the best was Moussa Sissoko,” said the Spurs boss (via

“I want to say thank you for how professional he was all season. Not too many people recognise him but I think he was fantastic today.

“Players like Wanyama who haven’t played too much, they were injured and today when you need to win they were there on the pitch giving their best.

“When we talk about the squad and how important it is in the season to respect them and treat them in the right way and today they were present and they played so well and they are part of the success of the team to finish in the top four for the third consecutive time.”

Doubts will remain over Sissoko’s ability and there are certain to be questions marks around his future this summer – I wouldn’t be surprised to see him leave at the end of the season.

But it’s obvious he is a player Pochettino trusts, and that’s clearly something the Argentinian values.



  1. Am I missing something ? – Sissoko along with Aurier has been totally useless all season – in 60 years supporting Spurs I have not seen many worse players – what is the hold Sissoko has over Poch ?

    • I imagine the same hold that he had over Deschamps. Both laud his professionalism and his ability to simply go out and do whatever it is they ask him to do in the midfield. Shame that he looks ungainly, can’t spot a forward pass or even finish.

      Aurier is no surprise. He was exactly the same at PSG, average concentration, panic in his own area and the potential to give away a penalty with a rash challenge or receive a red. Decent when his team have the ball, a liability when they don’t. He was even known in ligue 1 for his inability to take a throw in so I can only imagine that he was bought to be a squad player.

  2. Couldn’t agree more Aurier is a dreadful buy, Sissoko beyond belief. Poch is a bright guy and steeped in football and, yes, maybe he’s sees something else, sees Sissoko achieving something he wants done, but it just feels like blarney to me – another Levy unthoughtout splash-the-cash and the manager has to make the best of it.

  3. Sorry poch, you cannot pull the wool over anybodies eyes regarding Sissoko, not even the poor suckers we try to offload him onto. I sadly think we’re lumbered with this waste of space until his contact expires. Shades of Adebayor, then again, at least he did score the (very) odd goal.

  4. As much as I have my own opinion on Sissoko, much credit to Poch for defending him.
    Sissoko has TRIED to change the attitude that dogged his first season at Spurs, and he
    has done OK, if not brilliantly, since. Mentally, he’s not a game changer, or a leader ..we’ve few ‘leaders’
    in the squad anyway ..but at least he tries to implement what Poch wants from him, and he’s never been short of talent.
    For his improved attitude alone, he deserves credit. He will not, however, take us to another level, and as much as I don’t worry about him being in the team against lesser sides, I do fret when seeing him in the frame against the top clubs, and/or in major one-off games. It might be best that he now departs.
    And the man who’s supported Spurs for 60 years and never seen anyone worse is looking through rose tinted glasses. I’ve been a Spurs fan since the mid 60s, and seen dozens of players worse than Sissoko.
    Not many worse than Aurier tho’. Oh, the deluded Spurs fans back in Aug/Sept who argued he was an upgrade on Walker!!! I could see, after one game, he was gonna be a disaster! At 25/26 he was never going to improve, either.


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