It has been a quiet summer for Tottenham Hotspur. Last year’s Premier League runners-up have yet to do what clubs do in the summer months: sign new players. Yet, while their opponents get down to business, just about everyone at Spurs is fine with the club’s lack of activity.
“I am so calm and happy that the team is doing well,” Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino said post-match after Spurs’ 3-2 loss to AS Roma at Red Bull Arena. Two matches into their preseason tour of the United States, Pochettino is pleased with the fitness of his players, including the handful of academy products that have filled in the gaps on the US tour roster.
The select players that addressed the media spoke highly of the youngsters on tour, including Kieran Tripper, who singled out recent U-20 World Cup winners Josh Onomah and Kyle Walker-Peters. “All of the young boys that do well in training, they deserve the chance to be here with us all,” the right back said. “We’ve got great talent.”
For Pochettino, though, the young players may not convert their preseason squad spots into first team ones when the season gets underway next month. “They have the possibility to play and to learn, to show their quality,” he said, but “we are talking about players that are so young and need time to settle on the first team.”
Despite that, many at Spurs are in no rush to add to the squad, particularly in the splashy way other clubs in England have. Christian Eriksen and Mousa Dembélé have, over the last week, voiced their support for the team’s transfer activity, and even Daniel Levy has chimed in, saying that the club “can produce our own players,” and therefore “don’t have to go and spend £20, £30 million, £40 million on a player.”
Pochettino said he “didn’t hear” Levy’s comments, and was surprised when he heard them at the press conference. He did say that he “didn’t hear that from him in private” about the chairman’s opinion, though he might now ask Levy about it.
Spurs have clearly exuded confidence in their philosophy when it comes to player acquisition throughout their preseason tour. Prompted by the topic of high spending in the Premier League, Pochettino said, “I respect every philosophy. I respect every way that another manager or another club are doing. We are Tottenham. We create our own philosophy, our own way.”
The manager concluded, “I think that it’s clear, in the last three years, my philosophy has helped me a lot to reach or achieve the thing that [the club wants].”
Other quotes of the night
“I said, ‘Come on. It’s no sense because we were talking in Spanish. Nobody understand[s] that.’”
-Mauricio Pochettino on refusing to be sent off in the second half
“I need to watch again the replay to see if there is a foul or no on Kevin Wimmer, but it’s a lack of concentration. We scored the second goal. We thought the game was over, but in football, it’s never over.”
-Hugo Lloris on AS Roma’s match winner
“No, not really.”
-Cameron Carter-Vickers on being contacted by the United States men’s national team since the coaching change in November
“We just need to keep doing what we’re doing. We’ve got a lot of quality players in the dressing room.”
-Kieran Trippier on how Tottenham can improve heading into the new season
“I really enjoy the football under Mauricio Pochettino and his philosophy, to play a possession game, to play an aggressive game and try to press the opponent, try to get the control of the game, and the way we work every day, it’s a good time to be a Spurs player because you improve a lot every day.”
-Hugo Lloris on life with Pochettino