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Mauricio Pochettino defends Moussa Sissoko, says he’s one of Tottenham’s “most important players”

Poch is tired of the Sissoko slander.

Tottenham Hotspur v Liverpool - Premier League Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Moussa Sissoko is not exactly a fan favorite at Tottenham Hotspur. The Frenchman started poorly at the club and has never really recovered to return himself to the good graces of Spurs supporters.

Mauricio Pochettino has noticed, and doesn’t agree with the way Sissoko has been treated. The Evening Standard has more...

“You have to give the credit to him because he is the only player who provides balance in those transitions - offensive to defensive, defensive to offensive - in the team. There is no other player in the team who can provide that. This is the best quality he provides to the team, who need that balance nowadays. He has been one of our most important players.”

“We create myths. Sometimes you think a way about someone because of first impressions and then they stick forever. I like that you give credit to him because he is doing very well.”

Clearly not everyone will agree with these quotes from Pochettino, but he makes a few good points.

Sissoko has not been great this season, but he definitely hasn’t been as bad as he was for most of last season. He is more comfortable in the team now than he was then. That has shown through in the form of a couple average-to-good performances, but yeah he probably still isn’t doing enough.

The 28-year-old joined Spurs from Newcastle for £30 million on deadline day of the 2016 summer transfer window. He hasn’t lived up to expectations, but some of the treatment he has received from Tottenham fans has been harsh. Sometimes his touch is heavy and his passes misplaced, but it’s not a scenario where the player isn’t trying. Sissoko gives his all and doesn’t deserve to be booed or scapegoated.

At the moment, he is an important player in that Spurs need depth and players who can do a job off the bench. Moussa can be that, but it’s true that he is not the kind of player who is crucial to the ambitious future that Tottenham are pursuing.

Either way, he’s a Spurs player now, and he deserves our support. Pochettino understands that Sissoko’s job will only be tougher if he doesn’t have the fans at his back.