Mauricio Pochettino has admitted that he wanted to 'kill' his Tottenham Hotspur players after their disastrous end to the 2015/16 season.
Spurs were in contention for the Premier League title with four games to go, but a winless run in their final games of the season saw Leicester ease to domestic glory.
West Brom inflicted the first blow, nicking a 1-1 draw at White Hart Lane; the famous 2-2 draw with Chelsea followed before a 2-1 loss to Southampton was capped off in humiliating style as Spurs lost 5-1 away to already relegated Newcastle.
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Speaking to the Mirror, Pochettino explains the sort of mood he was in after one of the worst collapses in Premier League history:
“I wanted to kill all of them. And I did not have the opportunity to kill them. I kill myself too. I
just told them: ‘If I have the opportunity to kill you, then I kill everyone.’ I am very honest with them and they are very honest with me. That is a very good relationship.
“They need to hear from the manager my feelings, how I felt after the season, because there was no time to share [then].
"I explained my point of view, my feelings, and that was a very good meeting, between each other, to share our feelings. That is a good point to improve for the future.”
The Argentinian manager is hopeful that the experiences learned from last season could benefit Spurs' young squad.
“It’s the biggest lesson. We need to understand that for ourselves, we don’t need someone from the outside to tell us what happened.
“Sometimes we were very focused and other times it was like a war again. We need
to be focused in our game, we need to improve and not to be focused on other things.
“Football is tactical, is physical, technical, but it is mental. More mental than many years ago.
"To be strong in your mind, and how to improve, is important. And then we need to know how to improve our mental state. That is very, very important.
“It is not tactical, it is not philosophical, because after two years we know very well how we need to play. It is here in our heads that we need to improve.
“We need to show that because if not then we will show we are not intelligent or clever. It’s a good point. Football is about experience and learning to improve. Our team today is more mature than last season.”
Spurs kickstart their season away to Everton Saturday and Pochettino will be hoping that his side can continue to make strides which has seen them become a genuine threat in the Premier League.
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