Mauricio Pochettino has said that he still has “a very good relationship” with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy, despite his side’s disappointing start to the season.
After their 3-0 defeat to Brighton at the weekend – a game in which, to make matters worse, Hugo Lloris sustained a serious elbow injury – Spurs have won two of their last five games in the Premier League and are currently ninth in the table.
They also suffered an embarrassing defeat to Colchester on penalties in the Carabao Cup, while their Champions League campaign has begun with a frustrating draw against Olympiakos and a crushing 7-2 defeat to Bayern Munich.
Spurs are still coming to terms with life after last season’s Champions League final, where they lost 2-0 to Liverpool.
Having overachieved so spectacularly only for it all to crumble away at the last moment, they are still dealing with the psychological aftershock and also have several players in the squad – Christian Eriksen, Danny Rose and Toby Alderweireld, most notably – who came close to leaving in the aftermath.
There have also been some signs of friction between Pochettino and the club hierarchy over transfer policy in recent seasons, not least when Spurs went well over a year without signing anyone after the arrival of Lucas Moura in January 2018.
Speaking at the Aspire Academy global summit in Qatar on Monday, however, Pochettino suggested that he and Levy still share a strong mutual respect.
“We maintain a very good relationship and it is extraordinary to have that support,” he said.
“I have always told him that, in addition to my chairman, I consider him a friend.
“Football is not a drama, it is passion and we cannot separate it from emotions,” he went on, “but neither can we make a sport as fantastic as this one [all about] the latest result.
“We must learn from defeats to be able to exceed our limits and that begins by accepting that you don’t always win and that the opponent also works hard and [has] merits.
“You must always react with dignity to the result, regardless of whether it is good or bad.”