Mauricio Pochettino is deeply unhappy with how he has been left to mend and make do for the 2018/19 season.
It beggars belief that Spurs were the only club across Europe’s top 5 leagues not to spend in the summer.
A source at Tottenham have told the Harry Hotspur blog that the feel-good factor from Mauricio’s recently extended 5-year contract (worth a reported £8.5million) is rapidly wearing off.
The suggestion is that there was no sense of urgency given to securing primary targets in the last transfer window, and that the very few names that were put forward by chairman Daniel Levy, were then deemed substandard by the Argentine.
It’s also rather sad that Pochettino’s desire for Levy ‘to be brave’ only extended to a significantly improved deal for Harry Kane, presumably prompted by the threat a good World Cup for the 25-year old might pose.
The late opening of the stadium is certainly an issue, but internally this came as no great surprise.
Poch’s real problem is when he is staring at his first team personnel, asking himself, ‘what is my best XI this week?’
The inability to sign even one player in the summer has pressured the entire squad.
Notably it is muscle injuries that have plagued Spurs. Danny Rose, Mousa Dembele, Jan Vertonghen, Dele Alli and Christian Eriksen are all currently side-lined, although there have been as many as 8 players out on occasion this season.
Whilst Spurs are having their best start to a season in the Premier League, amassing 18 points from 8 games, there is some doubt over the quality of opponent that Pochettino’s boys have faced so far.
It could be said Tottenham have lost when they have played anyone good.
So far, those good sides have included, Liverpool, Barcelona and Inter.
Pochettino fears that he is becoming cut adrift from the project which now appears to be more about the propulsion of the THFC brand, than it does about the actual football team.
Contract renewals for key players feel like they have been mothballed.
In 2019, deals for Mousa Dembele, Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghemn all run out. Christian Eriksen’s £75,000 a week contract expires in 2020.
Compared to the wage structure of rivals, neither Jan, Toby or Christian are being paid ‘market rate’ salaries.
Respected commentator Guillem Balague recently said of the situation, “Any other manager would probably have left already, and I know there are other bosses out there who have asked Pochettino why he is still there.”
One can only hesitate to imagine what a less professional coach would be saying publicly, when quizzed over signings and contract extensions.
The winter transfer window is notoriously flat. Only an extremely naive person would imagine that any credible answers will be found this coming January.
Mauricio Pochettino has worked comparative miracles at Spurs, and despite not having lifted any trophies as a manager, his stock remains high.
It will be fascinating to see how Levy attempts to untangle this particular mess.