Jurgen Klinsmann has urged everyone at Tottenham Hotspur to keep faith in Mauricio Pochettino, who is already the subject of some scrutiny.
Spurs sacked Andre Villas-Boas last December after a disappointing run of results, and his successor, Tim Sherwood, was shown the door in the summer when he failed to deliver a top-four finish. Daniel Levy and co then turned to the Argentine Pochettino, who had enjoyed a fine first full season in charge of Southampton when he led the St Mary’s side to an eighth place finish.
That he did so whilst deploying an attractive style of football made him a welcome appointment at White Hart Lane, but it has been a difficult beginning to life in North London for the 42-year-old. Indeed, he needs to lead his team to four wins and a draw from their next five fixtures if they are to match the points tally which Villas-Boas secured prior to his dismissal almost 12 months ago.
The latest defeat for Tottenham was a 2-1 reverse at home to Stoke City, their fourth in five matches, which led to a chorus of boos at the final whistle. This has place Pochettino in the firing line somewhat, but former White Hart Lane favourite Klinsmann, who has been in charge of the US national side since July 2011, has urged everyone at the club to get behind the South American.
“I wish Mauricio Pochettino only the best,” he said. “He’s a tremendous, talented coach. He’s shown that already. He’s got a smart brain. In order for Mauricio to put his stamp on Spurs he needs time. He also needs a couple of transfer windows to build the team he has in mind, to put the puzzle together that he envisions. Unfortunately, football is driven by short-term results and high media expectations and high fan expectations and that often drives clubs to make very quick decisions.”
Another Spurs figure who has been in the headlines since the weekend is Emmanuel Adebayor. The former Arsenal striker was quoted as criticising the supporters for booing the team off the pitch after the defeat to Stoke, even suggesting he and his team-mates are better off playing away from home. However, the 30-year-old has now moved to clarify his comments.
“I would like to clarify some recent reports in the newspapers,” read his official Twitter feed. “I have NEVER criticised Tottenham fans. I just merely suggested that it would be more positive if they got behind the team more. I love the club as do all the players in the dressing room. We would all do anything to make this team win but like most people we respond better to praise than criticism. We will get this right. Please bear with us and we will improve.”
Such is the nature of the Premier League in these early stages, that whilst Spurs are currently in 12th position, they are just four points adrift of West Ham United who occupy the much-coveted final qualifying position for the UEFA Champions League. Pochettino and his players are back in action after the international break, when they face a tough task at Hull City.