Thrashing of Red Star is a ‘first step’ to rebuilding confidence – Pochettino


Mauricio Pochettino insists it is only a matter of time until Tottenham rediscover top form following a confidence-boosting Champions League win.

Spurs thrashed Red Star Belgrade 5-0 on Tuesday evening to register only their fourth victory in a dismal season so far.

Tottenham boss Pochettino has come under increased scrutiny during the poor run and is facing the first real test of his five-year tenure.

Despite relentless pressure and constant speculation, the Argentinian remains positive about reviving the north London club’s fortunes.

“I feel good because we start to see that it’s only the time we need to recover our best feelings,” said Pochettino.

“We need to build that confidence, we need to go step by step, being solid again and that is only the first step to build again our confidence and to try to perform in the way that everyone expects.

“The most important thing is to be together and be calm and know that this type of thing can happen in any team.”

Braces from Son Heung-min and Harry Kane, plus a strike from Erik Lamela, moved Tottenham to second place in Group B to reinvigorate their hopes of reaching the knockout stages.

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Spurs supporters backed their under-fire manager by singing his name during the convincing victory.

Pochettino is keen to show he reciprocates that adoration and pledged to give “200 per cent” to satisfy expectations.

“I feel that they love me and I think they need to feel that I love them too,” Pochettino said of Tottenham’s fan base.

“Of course now is a tough situation. We are a club and that commitment that we showed in the past, we are now showing.

“That makes me feel more responsible about my job and I need to work every day 200 per cent to try to provide the result that they expect from us.”

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Serbian champions Red Star, who were comfortably outclassed, could face further UEFA sanctions after around 200 travelling supporters defied a ban to be at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The punishment was imposed by the governing body due to racist abuse by the Belgrade club’s fans during a qualifying match in Finland in July.

Red Star coach Vladan Milojevic felt it was inevitable that some away supporters would attend.

Tottenham Hotspur’s Son Heung-min
Tottenham Hotspur’s Son Heung-min

“I’m not surprised. Red Star is one of the biggest clubs in the Balkans,” he said.

“There are many of our fans, some of them live in this country, in London, or maybe surrounding countries and for them Red Star is a very important club.

“It’s a love that they feel for the club, I can’t describe this with words, this sort of love.

“People came, I’m sure they weren’t organised as a group.”