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Pochettino not surprised to be linked to Barcelona job

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has talked about the rumours he could replace Luis Enrique at Barcelona in the next season. Pochettino referred to these as being “part of the business”.

Mauricio Pochettino has received plenty of praise in recent years for his work at Tottenham. The London side has been able to compete with the largest teams in England despite a sizeable difference in budget. He is also familiar with La Liga having started his managerial career at Espanyol, Barcelona’s rivals.

Luis Enrique announced last week his plans to step down as manager of Barcelona at the end of the season. The manager cited the “need for rest” as primary reason for his exit. The departure sparked many rumours of suitable replacements. Pochettino was one of the names toping this list. The Barcelona board has not yet dropped any hints about their choice for a future manager.

Mauricio Pochettino addressed the rumours at the press conference prior to Sunday’s game against Everton.

“I saw it’s a big list, 100 names. Like I always told you it’s a business I know very well. I was born with a ball in my arms and I understand very well the business. I don’t take it as flattering.”

“For me Tottenham is one of the biggest clubs. We play very good football, [have an] exciting team and very good players. It’s normal we catch the attention of other clubs and football people. We are part of that business and our names always appear on the lists.”

TEAM NEWS: @HKane, @AlderweireldTob and @JanVertonghen are all progressing well and will be assessed after final training session. pic.twitter.com/IsCfImvAK2

— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) March 3, 2017

The manager also spoke about striker Harry Kane’s injury concerns. Kane is on a great run of form having scored two hat-tricks in Tottenham’s last three games. Medical staff is to assess his condition and determine whether he can play on Sunday. The injury was sustained following a collision with the post in the game against Stoke.

“The first moment he said it was good. When after a few minutes he tried, I asked. In that moment we made two changes. He said I am okay.”

“But at the end of the game when it got cold, it appeared more painful. But I trust that he can play Sunday. If not, if he is a risk, he will not be in the squad.”

Tottenham will also be without defender Toby Alderweireld, as well as long-term injuries Erik Lamela and Danny Rose. Jan Vertonghen is expected to be ready to start the game. Tottenham currently occupy a very respectable second place in the Premier League, while Everton are seventh.

 

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