Tottenham Hotspur vs AS Roma – Spurs US Tour
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino is not happy despite his side beating Roma 4-1 in the International Champions Cup in San Diego.
He claims Spurs will be at a “massive disadvantage” when the Premier League season opens as a result of so many players being at the World Cup.
And so far the club, along with Burnley, are the only ones not to make any signings.
Plus, Spurs will also be without South Korean star Son Heung-Min for up to a month because of the Asian Games in August.
Fernando Llorente and Lucas Moura each scored twice in the first-half as Spurs came from behind to beat Roma in front of 18,865 fans at the SDCCU Stadium.
The Premier League is starting a week earlier than the rest of Europe.
Pochettino has claimed the authorities should have delayed the season’s kick-off by a week — bringing it in line with La Liga, Serie A and Ligue 1 — to allow the World Cup players more recovery time.
Spurs had nine players in the World Cup semi-finals — more than any other club.
France’s winning captain Hugo Lloris and the eight losing semi-finalists from England and Belgium are not on the US tour.
Although Spurs hope to have some back for their final pre-season match, against Girona on August 4, Harry Kane is not due to return to training until five days before their opening League game at Newcastle on August 11.
Quoted by the London Evening Standard, Pochettino said:
“The players need to rest, the players need a period to recover after more than 10 months’ competition. I’m not going to complain about them having that. I completely understand that they need 20 or 21 days to be away from football. But of course that is a massive disadvantage because to prepare the season in that way will be tough for them and us. But I need to adapt to what the Premier League propose. We cannot delete the start of the season. There’s nothing I can do. I think all the clubs are going to be in a similar condition — some with more problems than others. That is the reality and we cannot change it.”
Pochettino is happy with his stand-in strikers.
“Both Lucas Moura and Llorente, I am pleased for them. They are working so hard. It’s a massive opportunity for them to show and fight for a place in the starting XI.”
As to transfer speculation, Spurs have been most often linked with Anthony Martial who wants away from Manchester United but is supposedly priced at an exorbitant £80 million, and Jack Grealish from Aston Villa who will cost them £20 million-plus.
The Belgian international is allegedly in dispute with the club over a new contract.
His current contract runs until 2019, but Spurs have an option to extend it by a year. In doing so though, they trigger a release clause allowing him to leave for £25 million.
Rose has seemed destined to quit Tottenham for over a year following criticism of lack of big signings and a desire to go back north – he started out at Leeds. Both have been linked with Manchester United but there has been no confirmed news yet.
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