Mauricio Pochettino has again defended Harry Kane amid question marks over the Tottenham striker’s fitness and form.
Spurs boss Pochettino has repeatedly played down suggestions that Kane looks jaded as a result of his involvement in the World Cup for England.
And it was a similar story at a press conference on the eve of the Champions League clash with Inter Milan.
Pochettino said: “Harry is an easy target because it’s easy when he’s not scoring to start to talk about him. But Harry after four years at the club, there are a lot of things to say thank you to him.
“Of course he needs to improve, but the team needs to improve. But it’s easy to blame Harry. Because he’s up front, when the team loses and doesn’t score goals, it’s easy.
“But at the same time, it’s an easy judgement, it’s easy to analyse, to talk and always it’s about – maybe I am so repetitive and boring – the perception. Perception and reality are the opposites at our club.
“Maybe at a different club they have some good balance, but for us the perception with the reality are too far away.
“Every single fan in the last four years, every single person, every single team-mate of Harry needs to say thank you because when you see in the last four years what he has provided for the team, I think it’s too difficult to complain today because he is not scoring goals and because the team lost the last game or the game before.”
Pochettino revealed that defenders Kieran Trippier and Toby Alderweireld had not travelled with the squad.
He said: “It was a technical decision. You can find it in the dictionary, technical decision. Maybe tactical also on the pitch, yes, it’s tactical too.
“But it’s a technical decision. You cannot bring 25 players and can only play 11 and seven on the bench. That is the reason.”