Pochettino criticises Leeds boss Bielsa over ‘sad’ spygate scandal

Date published: Friday 18th January 2019 4:15

Mauricio Pochettino believes it is vital managers are allowed to make their final match preparations in privacy in the wake of the ‘Spygate’ row.

Pochettino found it difficult to condemn friend and former manager Marcelo Bielsa after the Leeds boss admitted spying on every opponent so far this season, but insisted his actions had been “wrong” in a country where such behaviour is still frowned upon.

Bielsa admitted on Wednesday to having every one of their Championship opponents watched in training, having confessed the week before that he had instructed a member of Leeds staff to go to Derby’s training ground on January 10 to keep tabs on the Rams, who Leeds were playing the following evening.

The Argentinian called a hastily-arranged media briefing to present his analysis to journalists – but the act of “spying” on another team has split opinion.

“It’s a situation that makes me a little bit sad,” Tottenham coach Pochettino said.

“It’s so important to split my special personal relationship with him and describe a situation that happened a week ago.

“Always my love is going to be with him. He was a person so important to me, to build my career as a player. After we’re talking about a situation that happened last week and I can’t agree (with it).

“For me, it’s wrong. I can understand (Derby manager) Frank Lampard’s feelings. It’s a thing that’s not easy to explain.

“The English people and the culture you create in the past here gives you the opportunity to work in privacy that doesn’t happen maybe in Germany or Argentina or Spain.

“Rather than talking about football and how fantastic Leeds are doing in the Championship, we’re talking about one fact that doesn’t help the football.

“That’s why the situation makes me a little bit sad. Of course it doesn’t change my view about Marcelo but I can’t agree with what happened.”


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