Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has stoked the fires ahead of Saturday’s visit to the Etihad stadium by suggesting that his team are a bigger club than Manchester City.
The Argentine has faced counterpart Pep Guardiola on a number of occasions when they were managing in La Liga at Espanyol and Barcelona respectively. Whilst the now City boss has the better record, Pochettino believes that things are very different in England and even suggested that Spurs were a bigger club than their opponents.
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) January 21, 2017
Speaking in his pre-match press conference (via Four Four Two), the Tottenham manager said: “(In Spain) the gap was massive, massive. Now, historically Tottenham is bigger than Manchester City. The fans are bigger at Tottenham.
“You can compare in Spain. Between Espanyol and Barcelona, you can measure the gap. Here, it’s too difficult to measure the gap. It’s a completely different world.”
Whilst Pochettino and his men head into the match full of confidence, having won all of their last seven matches, life is very different for Guardiola’s team who have received plenty of criticism this week, after slipping to a humiliating 4-0 defeat to Everton last weekend.
Questions are now being asked of the City manager’s credentials as his side continue to fall away from league leaders Chelsea, but he will have been comforted by Pochettino’s kind words, as the Spurs boss was quick to defend his record and suggested that it is too early to make any judgements.
He added: “It means nothing for City to lose to Everton. It does not change my admiration or my thoughts about him (Guardiola). Sometimes you can win, you can lose. That is the game.
“He doesn’t need to show his quality, his real quality as a coach and how he manages the team. He’s shown enough at Barcelona and Bayern Munich.
“Sometimes it’s about managing expectations. You cannot win titles after a few months. You need to wait until the end. And I’m sure Guardiola will fight with Manchester City at the end for big things.”