Pochettino Ready To Quit PSG For Manchester United Job – Reports

Paris Saint-Germain’s Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino greets supporters at the end of the French L1 football match between Paris-Saint Germain (PSG) and FC Nantes at The Parc des Princes Stadium in Paris on November 20, 2021. FRANCK FIFE / AFP

 

Paris Saint-Germain coach Mauricio Pochettino is ready to take up the reins at Manchester United if the English giants reach out to him.

Ole Gunnar Solksjaer, who fell out of favour with the board and club faithful, has been replaced by Michael Carrick, while they look to appoint an interim boss until the end of the season.

It is understood that Pochettino is prepared to vacate his position at PSG because he is unhappy in Paris, according to reports.

The former Tottenham boss was a heavy favourite for the Red Devils job after Jose Mourinho was relieved of his position in December 2018 and is still hugely admired by certain quarters of the Old Trafford ladder.

Interestingly, the Argentine will be in Manchester on Tuesday ahead of his team’s clash with Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday; however,  United are yet to make any official contact with him.

Also in support of the 49-year-old taking charge at United is a club legend, Gary Neville who claimed Pochettino wouldn’t think twice at the job offer

“I think Mauricio Pochettino – although he’d never say it – would leave to come to Man Utd on a five-year deal tomorrow,” Neville said in an interview with Skysports.

“He’d look at that group of players, he’d look at the club and he’d realise he’d probably be able to achieve more than he wants at Manchester United in terms of a project.”

Speaking on the United philosophy he said: “At PSG you are on a season by season, ‘you’ve got to win the Champions League or you’re out, type of model.”I don’t think that suits Pochettino. I think he would absolutely come to Manchester United on a five-year deal, with backing behind him.”

Pochettino has also been said to be increasingly frustrated at managing a dressing-room with big egos like Lionel Messi, Neymar, and Kylian Mbappe and would love out of the club.

Leicester City boss, Brendan Rodgers, has been heavily linked with the United job with the club willing to pay £8 million in compensation to the Foxes.

Rodgers also has a contract clause allowing him to speak to certain clubs if they require the Scottishman’s services.

Also in the running are Ajax boss, Erik ten Hag, who has been reported to be unavailable until the summer and Ralf Rangnick, the current head of sports and development at Lokomotiv Moscow.

 

 

 

 

 

Messi Suffers First PSG Defeat In Loss At Rennes

Paris Saint-Germain’s Argentinian forward Lionel Messi reacts during the French L1 football match between Stade Rennais (Rennes) and Paris Saint-Germain at the Roazhon Park in Rennes on October 3, 2021. (Photo by LOIC VENANCE / AFP)

 

Lionel Messi suffered his first defeat as a Paris Saint-Germain player on Sunday as their perfect start to the Ligue 1 season ended with a 2-0 loss at Rennes.

The Argentina star smacked the crossbar with a free-kick in the first half at Roazhon Park before Gaetan Laborde volleyed Rennes ahead just before the break with his league-leading sixth goal.

Flavien Tait struck less than 20 seconds after half-time to double the lead for Rennes, with Kylian Mbappe seeing a goal ruled out for offside as PSG’s eight-match winning run in the league this term ended.

“We didn’t start the match well but then we played the best 25-30 minutes of the season. It’s a shame we didn’t score. We conceded two goals that were hard to take,” said PSG coach Mauricio Pochettino.

PSG lost in the league for the first time since April, when they were beaten 1-0 at home by last season’s eventual champions Lille.

“In general, I’m satisfied, we created a lot of chances. Rennes scored with their first and the goal had a big emotional impact,” said Pochettino.

“I don’t like to lose, there’s a bit of anger. To go 2-0 down after a good period… We’re disappointed not to have finished off what we had. It leaves us a bit bitter and disappointed.”

Messi lined up alongside Neymar, Mbappe and Angel Di Maria for just the second match, making only his second league start for PSG after missing the past two Ligue 1 games with a knee injury.

Gianluigi Donnarumma again got the nod ahead of Keylor Navas in goal, having kept a clean sheet midweek in PSG’s Champions League win over Manchester City.

Looking to keep pace with the team that won its opening 14 games under Thomas Tuchel in 2018, PSG created a series of chances midway through the first half — all of which went to waste.

– Woodwork denies Messi –

Neymar skied horribly after the ball broke kindly to the Brazilian inside the Rennes area and Mbappe was guilty of another glaring miss when he scooped over after getting in behind the home defence.

Messi, who bagged a spectacular first goal PSG against City on Tuesday, nearly got off the mark in Ligue 1 but watched his curling free-kick from 25 yards clatter the bar on the half-hour.

Rennes goalkeeper Alfred Gomis crucially stuck out a hand to deny Neymar a tap-in as Di Maria squared across the six-yard box, and PSG paid the price for their missed opportunities on the stroke of half-time.

Kamaldeen Sulemana whipped in a cross from the left which was thumped beyond Donnarumma by Laborde, a deadline day signing from Montpellier.

Rennes, who spent 80 million euros ($92.6 million) on new signings in the summer — more than anyone in France including PSG — caught the visitors cold right at the start of the second half to make it 2-0.

Laborde, released down the right, pulled back for Tait to sweep in first time — the goal upheld after a VAR check for offside, and greeted by a deafening roar from a full house of close to 30,000 once it was confirmed.

Sulemana fired a ferocious drive narrowly over but PSG appeared to have pulled one back when Mbappe squeezed beyond Gomis, only for it to be chalked off upon review.

It could have been worse for Pochettino’s side had a penalty awarded to Rennes not been overturned in the closing stages after replays exonerated Achraf Hakimi from a foul on Laborde.

Instead PSG, who stay six points clear of second-placed Lens, must now reset after the international break that will see Messi and Neymar jet off to South America for a gruelling series of three World Cup qualifiers.

AFP

Messi To Play With Neymar And Mbappe For First Time, Says Pochettino

Paris Saint-Germain's Brazilian forward Neymar (L), Paris Saint-Germain's French forward Kylian Mbappe (C) and Paris Saint-Germain's Argentinian forward Lionel Messi take part in a training session at the Camp des Loges Paris Saint-Germain football club's training ground in Saint-Germain-en-Laye on August 28, 2021. FRANCK FIFE / AFP
Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian forward Neymar (L), Paris Saint-Germain’s French forward Kylian Mbappe (C) and Paris Saint-Germain’s Argentinian forward Lionel Messi take part in a training session at the Camp des Loges Paris Saint-Germain football club’s training ground in Saint-Germain-en-Laye on August 28, 2021. FRANCK FIFE / AFP

 

Kylian Mbappe, coveted by Real Madrid, should be in the Paris Saint-Germain squad at Reims, along with Lionel Messi, who could make his debut, and Neymar, coach Mauricio Pochettino said on Saturday.

“We have not yet announced the squad,” the coach told his press conference ahead of Sunday evening’s Ligue 1 match, adding that all the ‘magic trio’ “will certainly be among those named, we will see if they can play from the start of the match.”

Pochettino said Mbappe had not told him he wanted to leave PSG for Real Madrid.

READ ALSO: Ten-man Chelsea Hold Liverpool At Anfield

“Kylian has worked very well in training as usual”, Pochettino said.

As for the striker’s contractual situation, “our president and our sporting director have been clear about the club’s position”, Pochettino added.

PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi reiterated at the Champions League draw on Thursday that the club had not changed its position and intended to keep Mbappe.

Even without Messi and Neymar, PSG have won all three of their opening league games.

Tottenham Hold Talks With Former Boss Pochettino

Ex-Tottenham’s Argentine coach Mauricio Pochettino delivers a press conference on May 7, 2019, in Amsterdam, on the eve of the UEFA Champions League semi-final second leg football match between Ajax Amsterdam and Tottenham Hotspur. EMMANUEL DUNAND / AFP

 

Tottenham have made contact with former manager Mauricio Pochettino — currently boss of Paris Saint-Germain — about a return to the club, according to widespread reports in the British press on Friday.

The 49-year-old left Spurs in November 2019 after five years in charge and was replaced by Jose Mourinho, who was sacked last month.

Media reports say it is understood the London club have spoken to the Argentine, who replaced Thomas Tuchel at PSG in January, regarding the potential prospect of a second spell in charge in London.

READ ALSO: Suarez Scores As Atletico Madrid Win La Liga

PSG missed out on the Ligue 1 title for only the second time in nine seasons and lost to Manchester City in the Champions League semi-finals but won the French Cup.

The French club on Thursday issued an interview on their interview featuring Pochettino, who has 12 months left on his contract, talking about doing “great things in the future”.

“I’m happy with the way the players have adapted to the changes,” he said. “There are many things which could not be changed or which could not be developed for lack of time.

“But I still think that with this way of working, and with the desire to be able to develop other types of ideas on the ground, we will do great things in the future.”

Ajax boss Erik ten Hag and Brighton’s Graham Potter have been linked with the Spurs job and Antonio Conte could be in the frame following his exit from Inter Milan just days after winning the Italian title.

Pochettino would likely be the most popular appointment among the fans.

Tottenham mounted back-to-back Premier League title challenges under Pochettino before a memorable run to the 2019 Champions League final, where they lost to Liverpool.

But their form dipped alarmingly at the beginning of the following season and Pochettino was sacked in November 2019.

His relationship with the club — and chairman Daniel Levy — remained strong and he spoke about returning to the club one day.

In an interview in April last year, Pochettino told BT Sport: “Deep in my heart I am sure our paths will cross again. From the day I left the club, my dream is to be back one day and to try to finish the work we didn’t finish.”

AFP

 

Champions League: Bayern Are Favourites To Be Champions, Says Pochettino

File photo of Mauricio Pochettino. PHOTO: Adrian DENNIS / AFP

 

Paris Saint-Germain head coach, Mauricio Pochettino has described Bayern Munich as the best team in the world ahead of their Champions League second leg quarter-final fixture against the Bavarians tonight.

“I think the favourite has to be the champions’’ said Pochettino whose team achieved an impressive 3-2 victory in the first leg played at the Allianz Arena last week. The defeat was Bayern’s first in 20 Champions League matches, a run that has stayed for over two years.

PSG also produced a similarly impressive result when they embarrassed Barcelona 4-1 at the Nou Camp in the first leg of their last-16 tie this season and as his team prepare to clash with Bayern Munich tonight, the former Spurs manager has charged his team to be better.

READ ALSO: Perez Re-elected Unopposed As Real Madrid President

“There were a lot of sacrifices made in Germany, but we still have one game, 90 minutes to play. The first leg is favourable but the return will be difficult as we know.”

Bayern Munich manager, Hansi Flick says his side must improve if they are progress to the semi-finals but admits it will be a tough task

Defending champions, Bayern dominated possession and had the better chances in last week’s quarter-final first leg but failed to convert them. It means they have to score at least two goals at Parc des Princes tonight if they are to reach the last four.

“We had many chances but we were not as decisive as we should have been and we have to improve. We will do everything we can and approach the game with optimism

“We have to make sure we show the same ambition PSG showed against us. We have to force them into making mistakes. We know we have to score at least two goals.”

Bayern will still be without top-scorer Robert Lewandowski despite the Polish striker resuming training after a knee injury suffered on international duty last month while PSG will be without captain Marquinhos after the defender suffered a leg muscle injury in the first leg.

PSG Suffer First Defeat Under Pochettino After Lorient Comeback

Lorient’s Nigerian forward Terem Moffi (C) shoots and scores a goal with during the French L1 football match between FC Lorient and Paris Saint-Germain at the Stade Yves-Allainmat stadium, in Lorient, western France, on January 31, 2021. (Photo by DAMIEN MEYER / AFP)

 

Paris Saint-Germain suffered their first defeat under Mauricio Pochettino as lowly Lorient fought back to claim a dramatic 3-2 victory on Sunday and prevent the defending champions from retaking top spot in Ligue 1.

Neymar scored two penalties but the visitors collapsed late on at the Stade du Moustoir, as Nigerian Terem Moffi netted an injury-time winner.

The loss saw PSG stay one point behind league leaders Lyon, although third-placed Lille could go two points clear when they host Dijon later on Sunday.

“We have to keep the positive aspects and move forward,” said former Tottenham manager Pochettino.

“Accidents happen in football. We have to keep working. It makes us realise that it can happen if we don’t play at 100 percent.”

It was the first defeat in six games as PSG coach for Pochettino since he took over from the sacked Thomas Tuchel.

The win takes struggling Lorient into the relegation play-off spot.

“(Moffi’s goal) was magical. Against PSG, it’s even crazier,” said Lorient’s Laurent Abergel, who scored the opening goal.

“For a Marseille fan like me, the first dream is perhaps to play for OM and the second to beat PSG.”

READ ALSO: Serena Williams Still The Face Of Women’s Tennis, Says Osaka

Lorient started brightly and had the first real shot in anger in the 30th minute, as Adrian Grbic’s long-range strike had to be pushed away by PSG goalkeeper Sergio Rico.

The hosts did take the lead six minutes later, though, as PSG failed several times to clear and Abergel picked out the top corner with the outside of his left boot.

Neymar levelled on the stroke of half-time from the penalty spot with his fifth league goal of the season.

PSG improved after the break and took the lead in the 57th minute as Houboulang Mendes, who also conceded the first penalty, brought down Mauro Icardi and Neymar again made no mistake.

It was the first time since Zlatan Ibrahimovic in 2015 that a PSG player had netted two spot-kicks in a Ligue 1 match.

The visitors pressed for a third, but Lorient goalkeeper Matthieu Dreyer made an excellent stop to keep out an Icardi header.

That proved to be crucial, as the stubborn home side equalised in the 80th minute.

Substitute Yoane Wissa scored an excellent individual goal, his sixth of his first full campaign as a top-flight player.

PSG went in search of a winner, but the closest they came saw full-back Layvin Kurzawa’s drive fly narrowly wide.

They over-committed in the second minute of added time, leaving no defenders within 60 yards of their own goal as Moffi was sent racing clean through.

The 21-year-old, on as a sub, slotted the ball into the bottom corner to spark wild celebrations for the home team.

Pochettino Tests Positive For COVID-19

File photo of Mauricio Pochettino

 

Paris Saint-Germain coach Mauricio Pochettino has tested positive for Covid-19, the French champions said Friday, just two weeks after taking up his job.

The 48-year-old Argentine will “respect isolation and is subject to the appropriate health protocols”, PSG said on Twitter.

His assistants Jesus Perez and Miguel D’Agostino will take charge of the team for Saturday’s trip to Angers.

Three PSG players had already tested positive for the virus in the last week — Brazilian Rafinha, German player Thilo Kehrer and French youth international Colin Dagba.

Former Tottenham coach Pochettino has overseen three PSG games so far, notably winning the Champions Trophy in Lens on Wednesday thanks to a 2-1 win over bitter rivals Marseille.

Pochettino took over from Thomas Tuchel and signed a contract until June 30, 2022 with an option for an additional year.

Tuchel was sacked on December 24, reportedly for comments viewed as critical of the Qatari owners despite having led the team to a maiden appearance in the Champions League final last season.

Pochettino also played for PSG from 2001 to 2003.

-AFP

Pochettino Named New Coach Of Paris Saint-Germain

Mauricio Pochettino clapping at the end of the UEFA Champions League Group B football match between Red Star Belgrade (Crvena Zvezda) and Tottenham Hotspur at the Rajko Mitic stadium in Belgrade.  PHOTO: ANDREJ ISAKOVIC / AFP

Mauricio Pochettino has been announced as the new coach of French champions Paris Saint-Germain.

This following the sacking of Thomas Tuchel.

PSG said on its website that former Tottenham manager Pochettino had signed a contract until June 30, 2022, with an option for an additional year.

The 48-year-old Argentine was the only name in the frame to take over at the club where he played from 2001 to 2003 after PSG abruptly ended Tuchel’s involvement on December 24, reportedly for comments viewed as critical of the Qatari owners.

“This club has always held a special place in my heart. I have wonderful memories, especially of the unique atmosphere of the Parc des Princes,” Pochettino said in the PSG statement.

“I return to the club today with a lot of ambition and humility, and am eager to work with some of the world’s most talented players,” Pochettino said, adding he would do his utmost “to give our team the combative and attacking playing identity that Parisian fans have always loved.”

His priority will be to sate the Qatari-backed club’s quest for Champions League glory.

Tuchel, who oversaw the club’s first-ever Champions League final appearance last season, guided Neymar and company into the knock-out stages this season before being axed.

Pochettino’s first major test will be the Champions League last-16 away leg at Barcelona next month.

Pochettino will take charge of his first match next Saturday at Saint-Etienne as Ligue 1 resumes after the winter break with PSG one point off the leaders in third.

– Earned plaudits –

Then, on February 16, he will be plotting the downfall of his compatriot Lionel Messi’s Barcelona at the Camp Nou, with the return leg on March 6.

Like Tuchel, Pochettino was sacked after leading Spurs to their first-ever appearance in a Champions League final, against Liverpool in 2019.

Although he has yet to win any silverware the former PSG defender’s stock is high in managerial circles.

Pochettino made Tottenham a consistent Champions League qualifier in four years at the Premier League club before his departure in 2019.

He arrives in the French capital after being linked with a number of high-profile clubs, including Manchester United, Real Madrid, and Barca.

He is due to meet up with the world’s most expensive player Neymar, France’s World Cup-winning forward Kylian Mbappe, and their teammates at PSG’s first post-Christmas training session on Sunday.

His first coaching position was at struggling Espanyol, where in 2009 his first match in charge was against Barcelona.

He earned plaudits for saving the Spanish outfit, where he played under fellow Argentine Marcelo Bielsa in 1998, from relegation.

The son of a farmer from Murphy, in the north of Argentina, he will have under his wing several compatriots to count on such as Mauro Icardi, Angel Di Maria, and Leandro Paredes.

Pochettino will be keen to take advantage of the transfer window to bring in new faces, with French newspaper Le Parisien identifying his former Spurs charge, Inter Milan’s attacking midfielder Christian Eriksen, as one target. Dele Alli, who has fallen out of favour under Jose Mourinho at Tottenham, is another.

And looking further ahead, given their Argentine ties Pochettino may be the catalyst for six-time Ballon d’Or winner Messi to consider PSG as potential new employers when he is free to leave Barcelona at the end of the season.

AFP

Pochettino Wants To Manage Another Premier League Team

Tottenham Hotspur’s Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino gestures on the touchline during the 2019 International Champions Cup football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Inter Milan at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London on August 4, 2019.
Glyn KIRK / AFP

 

Mauricio Pochettino says returning to the Premier League is his “priority”, stating he is eager to manage again six months after being sacked by Tottenham.

The 48-year-old transformed Spurs’ fortunes during his five-and-a-half-year reign but failed to win a trophy and was sacked less than a year after leading them to the Champions League final.

The Argentine has now ended his six-month “gardening leave”, meaning he is free to join another club.

He has been heavily linked with Newcastle if their proposed Saudi Arabia-backed takeover goes through, while speculation over the Manchester United job has never gone away.

“After six months, our tanks are completely full,” Pochettino told various British media outlets.

“I have tried with my coaching staff to review everything that we did in the last seven years (including Southampton) because we never had a break until now.”

Pochettino, who still lives in London, said he “loved” England and the Premier League.

“I am not going change (my feelings) now because I am not involved in the Premier League,” he said. “Because I am no longer the Tottenham manager, I am not going to change my vision.

“I still think the Premier League is the best league in the world. We enjoy it a lot. Of course, it’s one of the options. Of course, it can be my priority but I am not closed to move to a different country.”

Pochettino said due to the uncertainty caused by the coronavirus crisis, it was difficult to know what opportunities would be available.

“Today we are going to live a completely different era in football that we need to discover,” he said. “It’s difficult to know what project is going to be the right project.

“There are many things, at the moment, that we have in our minds about how things are going to be after this virus hopefully disappears, but how are these clubs or companies, because that’s what they are, going to be? It’s a big question mark.”

Tottenham Sack Mauricio Pochettino

(FILES) In this file photo taken on November 09, 2019, Tottenham Hotspur’s Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino reacts during the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Sheffield United at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.
Ian KINGTON / AFP

 

Tottenham Hotspur sacked manager Mauricio Pochettino on Tuesday just five months after reaching the Champions League final following a poor start to the Premier League season.

“The club can today announce that Mauricio Pochettino and his coaching staff Jesus Perez, Miguel D’Agostino and Antoni Jimenez have been relieved of their duties,” Tottenham, who sit 14th in the Premier League, said in a statement.

Pochettino, 47, joined Spurs from Southampton in 2014 and has been instrumental in turning Tottenham into Champions League regulars over the past four seasons.

READ ALSO: Luis Enrique Returns As Spain Coach After Daughter’s Death

That culminated in a dramatic run to the club’s first-ever European Cup final in June, which they lost 2-0 to Liverpool in Madrid.

However, domestically results have been on the decline since February.

Spurs had the faltering fortunes of Arsenal and Manchester United to thank for them clinging onto a top-four finish last season as they won just three of their final 12 league games.

That form has continued at the start of this season with just three wins from their opening 12 games leaving Tottenham already 11 points outside the top four and 20 behind leaders Liverpool.

“We were extremely reluctant to make this change and it is not a decision the board has taken lightly, nor in haste,” said Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy.

“Regrettably domestic results at the end of last season and beginning of this season have been extremely disappointing.

“It falls to the board to make the difficult decisions — this one made more so given the many memorable moments we have had with Mauricio and his coaching staff — but we do so in the club’s best interests.”

AFP

Pochettino Admits Facing Bleak Future Over Tottenham Poor Performance

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino accepted on Monday his job will come under scrutiny if fails to rally the flagging fortunes of last season’s Champions League finalists.

Spurs have endured a terrible start to the season, winning just three of their first 12 games in all competitions, which has seen Pochettino face prolonged criticism for the first time in five-and -a-half years at the club.

“I am not surprised. That is football,” said Pochettino. “Football is always about to win today and tomorrow, what happened yesterday is gone.

“I understand it’s the business. I am 47 – look, why do you think that I don’t have white hair?

“Because I don’t pay attention to any of this. I only pay attention to what we need to do to improve our performance.”

Pochettino said after Saturday’s 1-1 draw against bottom-of-the-table Watford that his side was slowly regaining their confidence after a 7-2 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich in the Champions League three weeks ago.

Tottenham can begin to put that result right when they host Red Star Belgrade on Tuesday with the chance to move back into pole position for a place in the last 16.

“It’s important to win tomorrow to be in a good position in the table.” added Pochettino. “In this type of period, our worst opponent are ourselves and we need to compete with ourselves to build our confidence.”

Despite taking just one point from their first two games in Group B, Tottenham are better placed than they were at the same stage in the Champions League last season before going all the way to the final for the first time in the club’s history.

“We know it takes a lot of experience, a lot of energy to get through a Champions League group. If we can win tomorrow night we will be in a better position than last year and obviously we ended up going to the final,” said Harry Kane.

“We have to believe in every game we play, fight for each other and then who knows what’s possible.”

Kane’s form has not faltered as much as some of his team-mates with the England captain scoring seven times in 11 appearance for Spurs this season.

However, he admitted the past few weeks are the toughest period he has gone through since breaking into the first-team five years ago.

“The standards we have set over the past four or five years have been very high. Now when things aren’t going so well people are going to wonder why,” added Kane.

“This season little things aren’t going our way, we’ve got to try and find away to overcome that.”

AFP

Pochettino Rules Out Big Changes At Tottenham In January

Tottenham Hotspur’s Argentinian head coach Mauricio Pochettino/ AFP

 

Mauricio Pochettino does not want to make major changes at Tottenham in the January transfer window despite a poor start to his sixth season in charge.

Spurs have won just three of their opening 11 games in all competitions, crashing out of the League Cup to fourth-tier Colchester and suffering a humiliating 7-2 defeat at home to Bayern Munich in the Champions League.

That has led to suspicions that the current Tottenham squad has grown stale, with little movement in the transfer market in recent years.

However, Pochettino retains faith in the players that have helped the club make huge strides over the past five years, reaching the Champions League final in June.

“I don’t believe (there will be any signings),” said Pochettino on Thursday. “I believe in the players that we have.

“If it is my decision I am going to stick with my players because I know they have the quality.

“It is only to unlock some situation that is going on in their minds. I know we have the quality to be fighting for the things we expect to fight for.”

Pochettino was dealt a double blow in a 3-0 defeat to Brighton before the international break as captain Hugo Lloris suffered a dislocated elbow that will keep him out for the rest of the year.

Harry Kane will therefore assume the Spurs armband, as he does for England.

Pochettino was fulsome in his praise for how Kane handled the racist abuse aimed at England players during Monday’s Euro 2020 qualifier in Bulgaria.

The game in Sofia was stopped twice by the referee, with England eventually winning 6-0.

“The way Harry behaved was top,” added Pochettino. “The way he handled the situation on Monday was exemplary, fantastic, he showed calm, followed the rules. We’re so proud of how he behaved.

“He’s become a natural leader. It’s fantastic news for England and Tottenham.

“We will miss Hugo for a few months and to have Harry to step up is important, like others who are important players and mature. They will step up, assume their responsibility and handle problems when they happen like this.”

AFP