Kyle Walker: My move to Manchester City has paid off but I hope Spurs win FA Cup
PUBLISHED: 22:30 15 April 2018
PA Wire/PA Images
The former Tottenham Hotspur right-back discusses his move to the Etihad and Dele Alli expresses his frustration at Spurs’ slow start at Wembley
Kyle Walker believes Manchester City’s Premier League title triumph shows he made the right decision in leaving Tottenham Hotspur last summer – but he hopes his former club will win the FA Cup this season.
The right-back emerged victorious against his old team for the second time this campaign on Saturday night, with Pep Guardiola’s team following December’s 4-1 home victory over Spurs with a 3-1 win at Wembley.
Less than 24 hours later City were crowned champions, as their local rivals Manchester United lost 1-0 at home to West Bromwich Albion.
“Winning the Carabao Cup [in February] was a step in the right direction,” said Walker. “But to be in the Premier League since I was 19, playing all the games I’ve played in it, to not win the Premier League… It was a little bit devastating for me not to do with it with Tottenham. But to come here in my first season and [do it], it’s fantastic for me.
“You always say ‘is the grass greener on the other side?’ and it looks at this rate as if it is, but we need to continue. We can’t just stop at the one Premier League title.
“We need to go on and do that over a number of years before I think we’re regarded as one of the top teams to ever win the Premier League.”
Mauricio Pochettino stated on Thursday that Walker deserved a good reception from Spurs’ fans, despite his defection.
And, although the defender was instead booed at Wembley, he says the Argentinian’s comments show he still has a good relationship with the club – and he is hoping his former team-mates also secure silverware this season.
“I heard what the Tottenham boss said, and I think that just shows the respect we have for each other,” he said. “Whatever you read in the media, I know what really happened. I know the truth behind it.
“He can tell his story, I can tell my story but I won’t stand here and start slagging people off because that’s not what I’m about. I left because it felt like a time in my career where I needed to move on, and luckily it’s worked out.
“Do Tottenham have a squad that can win trophies? Most definitely. They’ve got Manchester United in the semi-finals of the FA Cup, which is a big trophy for them to go and win. Please God they go and do that, and I’m not just saying that.
“The lads deserve it, every single one of them. They work hard every day, and not just the lads but the coaching staff as well. For them to go and do that, when it’s probably a season where they were getting a lot of ifs and buts, that would be very good for them.”
Meanwhile, Dele Alli has expressed his frustration at Spurs’ slow start against City on Saturday. The hosts found themselves 2-0 down inside the opening 25 minutes en route to their 3-1 defeat, which ended a 14-match unbeaten run in the top flight.
“They’re a great side and if you’re going to start slowly against a team like this then they’re going to punish you, and that’s what they did,” he said. “They changed a few little things [this season].
“I don’t think their players have changed too much. Tactically they’re a lot stronger. They play the same way but they’ve really got to grips with it – they’re passing the ball well, moving. They’ve got players all over the pitch getting in behind, so it’s difficult to defend against.
“We fancied ourselves but we didn’t turn up in the first half and that’s what they’re going to do to you.
“It’s not down to me to say what we need to improve [during the summer], that’s the club’s decision - the chairman, the manager. I’m sure they’re looking at what they can do, getting ready for next season.
“City are a great side and everyone’s going to get stronger, like they did this season. Everyone’s going to look to improve. No-one in the Premier League is going to want to stand still, especially in the top six – no-one’s going to want to let the gap get too big.
“It’s important as players to focus on ourselves as individuals. We can’t worry about what goes on in the summer, about what players come. We’ve just got to make sure we’re ready. Whatever the club decides to do, hopefully it’s positive.”
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