Tottenham supporters have been in high spirits in the Transfer Tavern this week after seeing their team come from 2-0 down to earn a 2-2 draw with Serie A champions Juventus in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 clash on Tuesday.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men went into their match in Turin off the back of beating North London rivals Arsenal 1-0 in their preceding Premier League encounter, a result which extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to 12 games. Yet they were made to work extremely hard for number 13 on Tuesday night as a Gonzalo Higuain brace gave Juve a 2-0 lead after just nine minutes, only for strikes from Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen to earn a deserved draw for Spurs, thus making them favourites for progression when the two teams meet at Wembley in three weeks’ time.
Consequently, there have been many delighted Tottenham fans in the Tavern in the last few days, several of whom are daring to dream about what their team could go on to achieve this season, given their continued participation in the FA Cup and of course the Champions League.
In the meantime though, there has been much for our resident Spurs supporters to get their teeth into, not least recent reports suggesting that their side are set to offer manager Pochettino a new contract to remain as boss amid interest from some top European clubs.
And while this summer looks set to be a busy one on the transfer front, striking an agreement with Pochettino would undoubtedly be the best bit of business Tottenham can do this year.
Ultimately, the Argentine took over at the North London outfit back in 2014 to become the club’s tenth manager in just 12 years, and with the club having just finished sixth under the stewardship of Tim Sherwood.
Thus, things weren’t all that well at the club given the instability on the managerial front and the failure to return to the Champions League, and while Pochettino wasn’t able to deliver the latter in his first season, he has since taken the club up another level.
Third place in 2016 and second place last term should be more than enough to convince anyone of the Argentine’s capabilities, and while the fact he hasn’t won a trophy at Tottenham is in some people’s eyes hindering him, there is absolutely no doubt that he has transformed Spurs from a club on the outskirts of the top four to one very much challenging for major honours.
And it is the way he has gone about it which is particularly impressive, especially giving young players the chance and backing them in the first team – Kane, Dele Alli, Eric Dier have all been regulars for Spurs under the former centre-back, and look set to play a key part for both club and country in years to come.
There’s a reason the likes of Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are reportedly looking at Pochettino as their next manager – the fact that he hasn’t won a trophy isn’t irrelevant, but shouldn’t be held against him too greatly given the huge strides Tottenham have made under his leadership.
And they appear to be getting better under the Argentine as well.
Yes, they finished second to champions Chelsea last term and are fifth this season, but they have improved incredibly on the European stage, beating Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund in the group stages, just a year after falling at that hurdle in an inferior group including Monaco, Bayer Leverkusen, and CSKA Moscow. And second in the division could still happen, given they are just four points behind Manchester United.
Everything that Spurs have become in the last few years is chiefly down to Pochettino – they simply cannot afford to go into their new stadium next season, another transition, without the Argentine.
So securing an improved agreement with the 45-year-old in the near future would be the best piece of business the Tottenham hierarchy could do this year.
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