Former Tottenham managers defend Pochettino after Champions League exit - London Football News

Former Tottenham managers defend Pochettino after Champions League exit

Harry Redknapp and Tim Sherwood have defended Mauricio Pochettino in the wake of Tottenham’s Champions League exit at the hands of Juventus.

Both former Spurs managers were speaking on Talksport after ex-Tottenham defender Jason Cundy told the radio station he believed Pochettino had been “schooled” by his Juventus counterpart by Massimiliano Allegri.

Redknapp said: “Everybody’s always ready to jump on the bandwagon.

“What can he do? He’s stood there and they’ve completely dominated the game.

“I’m sure their manager (Allegri) couldn’t see it (Juventus’ comeback) coming either.

“He’s probably stood there thinking ‘How am I going to get back in the game?’ and suddenly you get a couple of breaks and the game’s gone your way.”

Sherwood also believes criticism of Tottenham boss Pochettino is unfair.

“There’s not a lot he can do about that,” Sherwood said.

“Allergri’s getting a lot of credit for changing it – he was forced upon it.

“It’s unfair to criticise Pochettino. You’d have to say Allegri got it wrong from the start – 26 shots at your goal can’t be a plan to win a football match.

“He changed it. Fair play to him. He rolled the dice and it came off. Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t, but to criticise Pochettino I think is unfair.

“They got outplayed – got outplayed in both legs actually. But they’ve got a lot of experience, you have to give them that, and are so clinical.

“They never panicked, and that comes from experience.”

Leading 3-2 on aggregate, with two away goals from the first leg in Turin, Spurs looked set for a place in the quarter-finals.

But Allegri’s resilient Juve side hit back in dramatic fashion, scoring twice in the space of three minutes midway through the second half to reach the last eight.

Gonzalo Higuain equalised and then set up Paulo Dybala for the Italian team’s winner.

And ex-Spurs and Chelsea centre-back Cundy insisted Pochettino should bear the responsibility for his team’s exit from the tournament.

Cundy said: “Pochettino has got to look at himself. I think he’s a brilliant young manager, but he got schooled.

“Allegri changed it. I don’t think anyone could have expected it (Juventus’ comeback) to happen so quickly, but within two or three minutes Higuaín has got them back into the game.

“You’re looking now for your manager. You’re looking for Pochettino. He didn’t do anything. He didn’t make a change.”

Speaking at his post-match press conference, Pochettino said he was “proud” of his players despite the result.

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