World Cup pain motivated Sissoko to enjoy great season with Tottenham
PUBLISHED: 12:00 15 May 2019
PA Wire/PA Images
The Frenchman was determined to give everything in the 2018/19 campaign after not being part of Didier Deschamps World Cup winning squad
Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Moussa Sissoko says missing out on France's 2018 FIFA World Cup win in Russia gave him the extra motivation he needed to enjoy club success this season.
The 29-year-old was part of Didier Deschamps' squad which made the Euro 2016 final and started the 1-0 loss to Portugal in Stade de France, but was only placed on the standby list for last summer's tournament following an inconsistent two years.
After not making the cut and watching Spurs team-mate Hugo Lloris lift the World Cup trophy, Sissoko has been transformed under Mauricio Pochettino this season.
He waited until the end of September to make his second start of the campaign for Tottenham, but has been one of their most consistent performers since and has played an integral role in them reaching the Champions League final in stunning fashion.
"Of course I was disappointed to not be in the squad for the World Cup, but like I said before if I was not in the squad it was for some reason and now the World Cup is gone," Sissoko explained.
"I said to myself (in the summer) I have a new season to start and I have to try to give everything and give my best and that is what I have done.
"Now we have reached the Champions League final and it is something amazing and now I need to give everything in the final and hopefully we can all win this title.
"It would be amazing for us and all the club and I think we will do it all together, but this is not because I didn't play in the World Cup; I didn't say to myself I have to win the Champions League.
"Like I said, the World Cup is gone. Congratulations to those who won the World Cup, but my focus was only on the next season and now we have the final of the Champions League so hopefully we can finish well this season."
Spurs and Liverpool have a three-week wait until the final in Madrid on June 1st after playing their final Premier League game of the campaign on Sunday.
For Jurgen Klopp's Reds, the disappointment of missing out on the title to Manchester City could linger, but Sissoko hopes the break could be a positive for Tottenham.
Harry Kane (ankle) and Harry Winks (groin) missed the final month of the domestic season through injuries, but should be fit for the Champions League final.
"Of course it is a little bit strange to wait three weeks without a game for the final, but we didn't make the decision and it is like that," Sissoko added.
"You have to accept this and at the same time we have had some injuries so hopefully everyone will be back.
"Over the last few weeks we have played a lot of games, so now we have time to recover and hopefully we will all be 100 per cent for the final and hopefully we can do well."