Pochettino Tottenham future unclear ahead of talks with club
LONDON (AP) — Mauricio Pochettino has added to doubts over his Tottenham future by expressing uncertainty over whether chairman Daniel Levy agrees with his plans to make the team more competitive.
After a 5-4 win over Leicester sealed a third-place Premier League finish on Sunday, Pochettino declined to state for certain whether he would remain in charge next season.
"We need to talk a lot between us and the club," Pochettino said. "I think I have a very clear idea what we need to do. I don't know if the club will be agreeing with me or not. But we are going to talk, next week, to create the new project or what I think what we need to do, together again, to try to improve.
"That is a little bit up to Daniel (Levy) of course, to the club, to be happy with us, because after four years I think we need to assess that period."
Pochettino is yet to win a trophy with Tottenham, although he has secured qualification for a third successive season in the Champions League.
"If we want to play and be real contenders for big, big trophies, yes, we need to review a little," Pochettino said. "First of all I need to speak with Daniel. Then we will know what we are going to do. Until today it was so difficult to talk about the future.
"I think Daniel is going to listen to me. But you know me and sometimes I have some crazy ideas. But you need to be brave. In this type of situation, with a club with our unbelievable fans, being brave is the most important, and to take risks. I think it's a moment the club needs to take risks and if possible work harder than the previous season to be competitive again."
Tottenham signed off from its temporary Wembley home in style by coming from behind to beat Leicester in a thrilling final-day Premier League encounter.
Harry Kane and Erik Lamela both scored twice while Christian Fuchs sored an own-goal. Kane's two goals took his tally to 30 for the season but the striker fell two goals short in his pursuit of a third successive Golden Boot that was clinched by Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah.
Tottenham, which finished as the top club in London, is returning to its rebuilt White Hart Lane stadium next season.
"To be close, to challenge the big sides, the sides that invest more than us," Pochettino said. "We cannot think we are the cleverest people in the world and that we will win trophies by spending small money. We need to think that our reality is different, because we are not this type of club that will invest crazy money.
"Together we need to feel we are a special club. That will help us create that feeling, and then anything can happen in football."
Asked if he will be Tottenham manager at the start of next season, Pochettino added: "In football you never know ... everything can change. It's out of my hands. It's not my decision, to be here or not. I depend on my bosses."
In the game, Tottenham fell behind when Jamie Vardy was unmarked to head Riyad Mahrez's fourth-minute free kick into the far corner.
It took just three minutes for Kane to make his mark. Lucas Moura won the ball high up the pitch and released Kane, who raced in on goal and shot past Eldin Jakupovic at the near post.
Leicester regained the lead in the 16th minute when Mahrez lashed home from the edge of the area after Victor Wanyama was dispossessed.
Kelechi Iheanacho's strike extended Leicester's lead two minutes into the second half. After a poor header from Eric Dier, Iheanacho picked the ball up, shrugged off Wanyama's challenge and launched an effort from 25 yards (meters) that rifled into the top corner.
Spurs looked headed for defeat, but an incredible three-goal salvo in 11 minutes turned the game in their favor.
Two minutes after Iheanacho's effort, Lamela got his first league goal since August 2016 when he tapped home from Kyle Walker-Peters' low cross at the end of a neat move. It was level in the 53rd when Lamela's shot went in off Fuchs for an own-goal.
The comeback was complete seven minutes later with a carbon copy of Lamela's first, with the Argentine converting another cross from Walker-Peters from close range.
Leicester did not give up the fight. Lloris produced another fine save to deny Iheanacho and the 2016 champions leveled in the 73rd when Vardy got in behind the defense and smashed high into the roof of the net from an acute angle.
Kane, though, had the final say by curling the ball into the far corner.