Mauricio Pochettino declared on Monday, January 7, that he could see himself being at Tottenham Hotspur for the next 20 years – the media spun the story differently.
Some media outlets claimed it was a veiled threat to Spurs chairman Daniel Levy.
Others said it was the beginning of his exit strategy as suitors like Manchester United and Real Madrid wait for a sign that he is ready to leave Tottenham.
In reality, this was far from the truth. Pochettino is an honest, passionate man who wears his heart on his sleeve,
The Tottenham boss was explaining why he wanted to stay and build; this does not suit the media narrative, so it was hardly surprising some were keen to put their own spin on his words.
“Pochettino to United” sells newspapers; “Pochettino happy at Spurs” does not – it is as simple as that.
“I hope, or I wish, to be here 20 years and decide to leave or to finish my career here,” BBC Sport quote him as saying.
“But I don’t know because, from what I saw, it was so unfair how the people treated him (Arsene Wenger) and talked.
“At the moment we operate in the same way as we operated five years ago. When I arrived. The other day I saw a stat about how teams were spending in Europe in the last 10 years and I think we were on the bottom – in England and Europe.
“Of course we are doing a fantastic job but if we want to be real contenders, we need to operate in a different way in the future.”
The Argentinian was clearly saying that he felt whilst the club had become a Champions League regular, they were not at present operating like one.
He is fully aware of the reasons why and has stated on numerous occasions that the club’s supporters need to be patient, whilst the new stadium is being developed.
Some of the media wanted to say this was his way of showing his frustrations.
They also conveniently ignored Pochetino’s early comments about his happiness at Tottenham.
“I am so focused here, and want to help the club to achieve what the club want to be in history,” the Spurs boss continued.
“It would be fantastic. I am so happy to be here. I am so happy to work in that pressure. Why not?”
The former Espanyol boss signed a new five-year contract at Spurs last summer but has been linked with both Real Madrid and United in recent months.
The amiable Argentine has stated his philosophy is based on developing players and team, promoting youth players and not just based on the chequebook.
How this fits in with the ethos of Manchester United or Real Madrid, where instant results are expected, I don’t know.
Tottenham fans should have few fears of their manager leaving anytime soon, unless something goes badly awry.
The football media will always look for cheap and easy stories before the truth.