Mauricio Pochettino.

Mauricio Pochettino understands more star players may want to leave Tottenham

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Mauricio Pochettino accepts more of Tottenham’s star players may look to follow Kyle Walker’s example by leaving the club to win trophies.

But, Pochettino stressed Spurs sanction sales on their own terms, with Walker only allowed to join Manchester City for a hefty £52million last summer.

Walker has enjoyed a blistering start under Pep Guardiola.

City are 11 points clear at the top of the table ahead of Saturday’s showdown with Tottenham and Walker has started all but two of their league games so far.

He has also more than doubled his wages at his new club.

Tottenham, meanwhile, have made great strides in the last three years, but are yet to win any silverware under Pochettino, who admits some of his players may not want to wait for success.

“Exactly, that is the problem,” Pochettino said.

“Maybe some players are not agreed in this plan and this strategy and of course they are right to complain, to talk and in the end to want to move or have another challenge for different reasons.

“We are all different and we all have different challenges, motivations, roles in our life. That is normal.

Tottenham Hotspur v Stoke City - Premier League

“The most important thing is to talk, to design the plan for everyone and then be happy everyone because life is about enjoying and being happy.”

Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has managed to commit nearly all of the club’s key players to long-term contracts and Walker is the only big name to have departed under Pochettino.

“It’s human nature that the players always want to improve and have different challenges and ideas,” Pochettino said.

“But I am not worried because in the end it’s always three parts in all the situations in football – the players, the club that owns the players, and if another club want some players, and in the end it’s to be agreed on different things and try to make everyone happy with the decision.

Manchester City v West Ham United - Premier League

“We’re not worried. We know how our project is and who we are, and in the end we try to develop our project not only thinking about today and tomorrow, but thinking long-term.

“That is so important, because it’s not only that we need to win today, tomorrow, after tomorrow. We need to win today, tomorrow and in one year and two, three, four years. That is the plan for Tottenham.”

Dele Alli is likely to be recalled after he was rested for Wednesday’s win against Brighton but Victor Wanyama and Toby Alderweireld are still out with knee and hamstring injuries respectively.

Pochettino also said there was no lingering ill-feeling with Guardiola over the Spaniard’s ‘Harry Kane team’ jibe in October.

Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool - Premier League

“It’s in the past, I forgot everything,” Pochettino said. “I think him too, the same.”

Spurs are unbeaten in their last four meetings with City, and have won three of those, but never have their opponents been in such relentless winning form.

“We’re going to play, for me, the best team today in Europe, not only in England,” Pochettino said.

“It’s not that we need to be brave – we need to behave like always, we need to think like always.

“Then it’s about playing and try to dominate and try to play in the way that sometimes you can. We’re going to play in a way that we believe we can win.”

Mauricio Pochettino
Premier League
Kyle Walker
Tottenham Hotspur

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