English Premiership

Lamela's take on Pochettino's methods

2016-03-02 11:35
Mauricio Pochettino (Getty Images)
Cape Town - Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino's demanding training sessions and his skill in rotating a young squad have given the team the opportunity to win the Premier League, striker Erik Lamela told Reuters.

The Argentine also praised his compatriot Pochettino for helping him get used to the rigours of the English game and for concentrating on one match at a time to ease the pressure of going for the club's first top-flight title since 1961

"Above all he's a good trainer," Lamela said of Pochettino.

"It's also good to have someone from your country who can talk to you in your language or be nearby when you need something.

"We're all very happy, me and my team-mates, with the work we're doing and we hope the season ends in the best possible way," he added after Tottenham's hard-earned 2-1 home win over Swansea City on Sunday.

Spurs, two points behind leaders Leicester City with 11 games left, now face two London derbies in succession that could make or break their title run-in, away to West Ham United on Wednesday followed by arch-rivals Arsenal at home on Saturday.

"He's found his team as they say, the important thing in this squad is that whoever plays he's managing the rotation very well," Lamela said of Pochettino.

"We hardly ever repeat the same team and that's good, it means we aren't just 11 players but a whole squad.

"Our practices are hard and that also helps the team to give their utmost," said Lamela, who turns 24 on Friday and is nicknamed "Coco".

Lamela has taken time to find his best form in England since joining Tottenham from AS Roma in 2013 for a club record fee of 25 million pounds ($34.95 million).

This season, however, he has shown skills that earned him an offer to move to Barcelona's youth academy as a boy, turned down by his family, and a first division debut for River Plate aged 17.

He was substituted after a hour on Sunday because, he said, "I had not trained for a week because of a stomach bug and played my second match in three days."

Spurs are also into the last 16 of the Europa League where they face Borussia Dortmund following a 4-1 aggregate victory over Fiorentina last Thursday.

"There are lots of matches and there are important ones coming up, West Ham, then the derby (with Arsenal)," Lamela said.

"They're all tough so the best thing it to take it match by match," he added.

"We have the same mentality in the Europa League, we trust in our chances, in our game, we have a great team."

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