Pochettino remains calm despite increasing pressure

Brian Jeeves

Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur – AMEX Stadium – Premier League – Saturday 12:30pm

Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur – Preview:

Under pressure, Mauricio Pochettino takes his beleaguered Tottenham Hotspur side to Brighton with the footballing world looking on, wondering how they will react following their midweek humiliation at the hands of Bayern Munich.

The slick Germans thrashed the north Londoners 7-2 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium with some sections of the support, and indeed media, suggesting that the Argentine has lost the dressing room.

Although it remains unclear as to whether that is the case, certainly all is not well in N17 with the Lilywhites floundering following last seasons epic run to the Champions League final.

Last weekend’s 2-1 Premier League success over Southampton was only Tottenham’s third win of the campaign and although they produced a gritty performance, particularly after going down to ten men, it was not the ‘vintage Spurs’ which we have been accustomed to witness in recent seasons.

Speaking ahead of what could be viewed as a ‘must-win’ match for Spurs, Pochettino spoke about the mood in the camp and how he believes they can get through arguably the most difficult spell during his tenure at the club.

“Like always, our responsibility is to assess the game and take ideas to try to improve<” the Argentine explained.

“It was a really strange game. After the first half – no one expected the result in the end.

“Our first thirty to thirty-five minutes we did really, really well. At half-time, I was so proud of the players. Sometimes things happen in football that you need to accept – when every single shot from Bayern Munich was inside the goal.

“In this situation, what can you do? Nothing! Stay all together. It was tough, the result was tough because you conceded seven goals. Now to stay calm, believe in our potential – like a team. Stay together, start to create a normal environment, knowing that we need to bounce back.

“In the end, at least it was only three points that you lost. Everything is open.”

Pochettino added: “We need to keep working. In your life, as a manager or a player, sometimes these type of periods happen – that no-one wants. We need to accept that it can happen in football and we need to face this difficult moment.

“All together we are going to find a way to bounce back and win games, that’s the most important – to win games and change the perception and emotions and start to stay happier than we are today.“

Serge Aurier misses the game at the AMEX, serving a one-match ban after his sending off against the Saints. Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether Pochettino will ring the changes after Tuesday’s debacle with Bayern.

Meanwhile, Brighton chief Graham Potter has been handed a boost with the news that Solly March and Alireza Jahanbakhsh will be available for the match after injury.

Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur – Head to head:

Brighton & Hove Albion won: 6
Drawn: 8
Tottenham Hotspur won: 14

Brighton & Hove Albion v Tottenham Hotspur – Last five meetings (all competitions):

October 29, 2014 – League Cup
Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Brighton & Hove Albion

December 13, 2017 – Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 Brighton & Hove Albion

April 17, 2018 – Premier League
Brighton & Hove Albion 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur

September 22, 2018 – Premier League
Brighton & Hove Albion 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur

April 23, 2019 – Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 Brighton & Hove Albion

Jeevesie’s prediction: Brighton & Hove Albion 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur

Brian Jeeves

Email: sport@yellowad.co.uk