Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino is talking to the media ahead of the close of the transfer window and the Premier League opener at Newcastle United.
“I am happy to keep all the squad together. There are many rumours during the summer about players out. I think the club made a massive effort to try to extend contracts with people like Harry Kane. He is one example but there are many examples too,” said Pochettino.
“I think the club is doing amazing effort to try to finish the stadium as soon as possible, ready to compete then, and the lodge finished at the training ground. It’s a massive effort from the club. Of course, it’s difficult to understand for people in football that Tottenham didn’t sign or sell players, but sometimes in football, you need to behave differently.
“If we are happy with our squad and cannot improve our squad, sometimes it’s better to keep our squad together. We believe a lot in our players and there’s no point now to say, why not repeat a similar season like last year or the season before, and with more experience.
“Now with players who compete at a high level in the World Cup or now we have the captain who is the world champion, the one who lifted the trophy. That is I think a fantastic experience for him to translate to our team. Sure we are going to be better, no doubt about that.”
“I think it’s never they [Alderweireld, Rose, Dembele] were away from our thoughts. They are Tottenham players and always they were in my plans. Different situations, sure the players have different targets in their careers but not only them but the rest of the players. Look, for me it’s always the same, for me they are part of the team. Like always, for me it’s about to take the right decision.
“Unfortunately I can only pick 11 every single game. I am a person who always tries to be fair with everyone. But sometimes you cannot be fair when you can only pick 11, you cannot pick 12 or 13 or 14 in a squad with 25 players. Sure you cannot be fair with everyone. Look I am so clear. I was so clear with everyone. I need their commitment. 25 players will full commitment but not only one week, two weeks, one month and if I no play then I give up and start to say ‘The gaffer is a bad guy’. No it’s not a drama.
“I think football we make it all a little bit drama and football is not a drama. Drama is another thing. Health is drama, war is drama. I don’t want to be a demagogue. But drama is many things in life but football is joy, to enjoy. It provides you with a lot in life to enjoy. I am such a privileged person thanks to that passion that is football. I can be here, I can talk English, I can learn English, I can travel around the world. I give to my people, to my family, my parents, my brothers and friends, try to help and give a very good life.
That is why sometimes I am so upset if one person can’t play a game it looks like it’s a massive drama. It’s not a drama. There are many things that don’t help the situations that happen. We need to try to be responsible, to be professional, but knowing that football is not a drama, it is a joy. Of course people that invest a lot of money in football it is a drama to lose money. But nobody put a gun to their head and said invest in football. Football is about to win or lose. The problem is when there is not a good balance between winning and losing and it’s more about business and money. In that money yes you start to feel that football is a drama.
“I want to be away from that drama and I need feel that emotion and translate to my players that football is emotions. It’s the context of emotions. Yes it’s a business, it’s about money, but when you are on the pitch you need to feel you love the game. If you don’t love the game and your priority is business that it’s difficult to enjoy your game and you cannot sure enjoy with your team-mates, your family or your fans. This is why it’s so important to make it clear that football is not a drama. We make a lot of drama and in the real life are a lot of dramas. Football decisions are not things that we need to put in a situation that looks like it is something we cannot deal with.”