Pochettino explains why he felt the need to celebrate goals against Watford
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
The Spurs manager notoriously remains calm on the touchline, but allowed himself to enjoy Fernando Llorente’s winner
Tottenham Hotspur left it late, but returned to winning ways with a 2-1 success over Watford in the Premier League on Wednesday night and you could see what the win meant to boss Mauricio Pochettino.
For a long period it seemed Craig Cathcart’s messy opener would give the Hornets a famous Wembley win, but Spurs produced more drama in the final exchanges.
Heung-min Son levelled in the 80th minute with a powerful finish which resulted in Pochettino looking to the heavens with a sigh of relief.
But better was to occur with three minutes of normal time left when Danny Rose’s cross was headed home by Fernando Llorente, who raced over to celebrate with the Tottenham manager.
Pochettino said: “I don’t think he wanted to come to me! I moved into his run, I put myself in the way to try to celebrate with him. I was so happy.
“Normally I never celebrate goals, but I felt a little bit of freedom to celebrate because we deserved to win.
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“For me, this game was so important because before the three points was going to be massive and for me massive to keep our position in the table.
“Also I’m so happy because Fernando worked so hard in the last four games after the injury of Harry Kane.
“He’s working so hard for the team, and to help the team to win three points is a massive thing always to build the confidence in a striker and more when you are competing with Harry Kane, or behind Harry - one of the best in the world.
“Always it’s difficult. Always you need time, but in all this time that he’s with us he’s always been a fantastic professional and always was pushing and helping the team.”
Spurs’ victory strengthened their hold on third spot in the Premier League and maybe opens a very tiny door for them in the title race.
Leaders Liverpool have 61 points, second-placed Manchester City have 56 and then on 54 is Tottenham.
If the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea – both on 47 – think they can still catch the north Londoners, then surely Pochettino will have thoughts on another late surge for the league championship like they produced in the 2016/17 campaign?
Regardless, it seems likely the Lilywhites will be without Georges-Kevin Nkoudou for the next few months with the winger expected to depart Hotspur Way to sign for a club on loan.
When asked about the former France youth international, Pochettino said: “No, I don’t know nothing.
“I am going to talk with my chief scout Steve Hitchen. I am going to ask for some news. I expect that maybe some player is going to leave, but I do not expect that we are going to add player to the squad.
“I am going to talk because I want to know some news about some player, but not because I am expecting to sign some player.”