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"I love him a lot – he made Tottenham one of the best teams in the world" – Marcelo Bielsa pays tribute to Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino

Marcelo Bielsa has lavished praise on Mauricio Pochettino after his fellow Argentinian was sacked by Tottenham on Tuesday.

Pochettino's five-and-a-half-year tenure in north London came to an end earlier this week after a disappointing start to the season.

Spurs have won only three of their first 12 Premier League games this term, leaving a team now managed by Jose Mourinho 11 points adrift of the top four.

And Bielsa, who once recruited a 13-year-old Pochettino to the youth ranks of Newell’s Old Boys, believes his compatriot still has a bright managerial future ahead of him.

"I will talk of the relationship I have with Pochettino and what I have seen in English football," the Leeds boss said.

"The work Pochettino has done is brilliant. In the last year he put Tottenham at a high level in the world. This for any manager is a big achievement.

"For me, it is more important because the team that played the final of the Champions League was a team he built very carefully. The performance of this team was linked to the collective play built between him and his players, rather than with top players bought for them. They didn’t buy top players.

"Maybe he could not enjoy this achievement at Tottenham. Maybe because I do not know the real situation, but he will take this credit because big clubs in the world will try to take him.

"This manager will lead one of the best teams in the world. The background is he makes Tottenham one of the best teams in the world.

"I like and love him a lot. It upsets me. When something not good happens to him I cannot ignore this. If we see the close effect of this situation we can be sad. I feel sad."

Mourinho will take his new side to the London Stadium to face West Ham on Saturday.

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