We don’t think of Mauricio Pochettino as being the kind to be loud and forceful in the changing room during matches — that goes against most of what we hear coming out of the mouths of current and past Spurs players. There aren’t many examples of Pochettino losing his cool.
But now we have one! As reported in the Telegraph, Danny Rose came out and credited Pochettino’s halftime team talk as the extra bit of motivation that the team needed to overcome a 1-0 deficit and earn a gritty 1-1 draw in the North London Derby on Saturday.
And this being Danny Rose, he did it in his typically outspoken, verbose way.
“We were on the back of a really difficult week. There’s no added motivation going into a north London derby but we can’t hide from the fact we were beaten at Burnley, we were beaten at Chelsea in the previous two games so there was more added pressure.
“The manager said some things at half-time and that was the turning point because he is usually really calm and collected. He normally talks to us at half-time and this time it was like he was really sending us to war.
“That was one of the best things I have witnessed in football, his half-time team talk, and we kept going and that was the attitude he wanted to see in the second half.”
Rose is always a great interview because he not only speaks his mind but does it in a way that is compelling and maybe just a little bit over the top. “One of the best things I have witnessed in football” is maaaaaaaaaybe a touch hyperbolic, but it’s obvious that Poch’s hair-dryer treatment slash St. Crispin’s Day speech had an effect on him. Also, “sending us to war” would probably explain his... uh, robust approach to playing as an emergency DM for much of the second half.
“[Pochettino] normally talks, he’s really calm as you have all seen. But this time he was really passionate. I felt as if I was literally going into war after the team talk that he gave. It’s literally one of the best team talks I have been involved in since I have been playing football.
“We are not used to losing two games in a row. Something needs to change somewhere. Whether we need a rocket up our backsides, I think he just tried a different approach. But I liked what he did at half-time, it really got me firing.
“As usual, it made me want to fight for him, fight for my team-mates and fight for my club. Some people can either take to that or go the other way and I love seeing things like that.”
I don’t know exactly what Poch said to the team but now I’d really REALLY like to!