Pochettino resigned to working with tight budget as stadium costs bite

Tottenham manager knows funding of new White Hard Lane a priority for Levy

 Mauricio Pochettino: “I hope that as soon as possible we can put all the focus on football only.” Photograph: Matthew Childs/Reuters

Mauricio Pochettino: “I hope that as soon as possible we can put all the focus on football only.” Photograph: Matthew Childs/Reuters

 

Mauricio Pochettino is ready for the perils of Tottenham having to balance paying for a new stadium with investing in the squad.

Spurs will move into their new White Hart Lane stadium – reported to be costing up to £1billion – next season, having played at Wembley during this campaign while redevelopment has been carried out.

They do not have to look too far across north London to see the difficult situation that can arise after a move to a new ground, with Arsenal no longer the real heavyweight force they were before moving from Highbury to the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners have not regularly been able to match big-spending trio Manchester City, Manchester United and Chelsea in the transfer market while also selling their best players in recent years. Spurs have never been known as the game’s biggest spenders anyway, so Pochettino is not surprised chairman Daniel Levy is having sleepless nights.

Asked when the new stadium will be paid for, the boss replied: “I don’t know, Daniel knows better than me!

“I hope that as soon as possible we can put all the focus on football only. I am sure that Arsène [Wenger] knows very well that it is not easy to build a stadium this type of stadium, and then getting good results and being competitive. It is so tough.

“I think it is a very difficult job for Daniel. I can understand why he struggles to sleep at night because it is amazing – you need to be worried, not worried, but focused.

“The last four seasons you can see that we spend in four years, a net zero, or £400,000. That is a little bit of the philosophy of the club. We have not finished the stadium and facilities.”

In advance of their FA Cup semi-final showdown against Manchester United, Pochettino said Spurs have gradually felt at home in their Wembley home from home and pointed to the game against Borussia Dortmund as the turning point in that process.

“I think that’s when we started to feel [like home],” he said. “I think Dortmund at that moment was the best team in Germany, was one of the best teams in Europe, was doing fantastic, doing fantastic at the top of the table in the Bundesliga and, at that moment, I think it felt as if we started to feel [like home].

“The atmosphere was brilliant, the fans were brilliant, fantastic, and I think in that moment we changed to believing we could win, we started to feel like Wembley was home for us and I think that was the massive change for the team.”

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