Tottenham Hotspur coach Maurico Pochettino today issued a defiant defence of his decision to prioritise getting eliminated from next season’s Champions League over staying in this season’s competition.
Speaking just hours after his side were defeated 2-1 by French side AS Monaco, the Argentine coach insisted that while fans may be angry now, his decision will be vindicated this time next year when they’re knocked out again.
“It was certainly a disappointing result. Am I annoyed at the display? Of course, but ultimately I have to look to the future and we have to focus on making sure that us getting knocked out of the Champions League isn’t a once-off,” said the former Southampton manager, adding that Hugo Lloris’ heroics augured well for a similarly impressive but ultimately futile performance this time next year.
Pochettino also used the match to give experience to young players, including midfielder Harry Winks, who he hopes will use it as an opportunity to prepare for next season.
“Harry was very upset that we were eliminated. But in time this pain will pass and he’ll be much more prepared for that same pain in twelve months,” he said.
At press time, Pochettino said that while he will allow his players a few days to come to terms with their elimination, he remains confident that it won’t get in the way of their not winning the title.