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Pochettino admits PL return a 'priority' amid NUFC links

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Former Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino admits a return to the Premier League is his 'priority' amid reports linking him with the post at Newcastle United.

The Argentinian was relieved of his duties in North London in November, and is no longer on the club's payroll having ended his six-month gardening leave earlier this week.

Pochettino is now free to join another club without his prospective employers needing to pay Spurs compensation, and the 48-year-old has been heavily linked with a St James' Park switch following a takeover.

The former Argentine international has also regularly linked with Manchester United, while Real Madrid have also been suitors in the past.

Pochettino has not ruled out accepting a job abroad, but has indicated he would prefer to return to the Premier League with his next post.

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Pochettino said: “After six months, our tanks are completely full.

“I have tried with my coaching staff to review everything that we did in the last seven years [including Southampton] because we never had a break until now.

“It has been an amazing time to review everything, to start to organise again our ideas to plan the future, to try to compete better, to try to learn from our experience and of course looking forward for the next job because that is very dynamic [fast-changing], football is very dynamic and you need to be ready for the moment when the offer appears, the new chapter in your professional life.

“Of course in my mind, I’m very open to wait for the seduction of the project rather than the country. It’s about the club and of course the people, the human dimension… maybe you can stick with people that you are going to enjoy working with. We are so open.

Newcastle United have been linked with former Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino.

“Of course we love England, and the Premier League. We feel very good here. We are still living here in London. I am not going change [my feelings] now because I am not involved in the Premier League.

“Because I am no longer the Tottenham manager, I am not going to change my vision.

“I still think the Premier League is the best league in the world. We enjoy it a lot. Of course, it’s one of the options. Of course, it can be my priority but I am not closed to move to a different country.”

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This desire to remain in England is also down to Pochettino's personal circumstances, with his two sons Sebastiano and Maurizio living in London still, despite the family having a home in Barcelona.

He added: “We have our house and our home here.

“We feel very good for the future in this country. People are very respectful. Football is so exciting.

“It’s difficult to move to Barcelona. And then my kids. Maurizio is playing for Tottenham, Sebastiano has a girlfriend here in London.

“The family is moving around here in London. At the moment my idea is to stay here, live in London – me, myself and my family.”

Pochettino is unlikely to be short of offers to resume his managerial career whenever football returns to some sort of normality.

While the former Tottenham boss admits he dreams of the "perfect project", but accepts the uncertainty of the coronavirus crisis means he is unsure what opportunities could present themselves.

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Pochettino added: “Always, you dream of the perfect club. The perfect project. It’s difficult to discover until… the project is not on the table. It’s difficult to assess.

“From outside, it’s difficult to measure the capacity of the clubs, the capacity of the players, the squad. You need to share ideas in the moment that some club approaches you and start to talk.

“To try to find if the project is a good fit or not.

“Today we are going to live a completely different era in football that we need to discover. It’s difficult to know what project is going to be the right project.

“There are many things, at the moment, that we have in our minds about how things are going to be after this virus hopefully disappears, but how are these clubs or companies, because that’s what they are, going to be? It’s a big question mark.

Mauricio Pochettino, Manager of Tottenham Hotspur looks on

“That’s why it’s so difficult. We are a coaching staff that are open to listen to all the projects, all the people. We are learning and sharing ideas.

“You never know when it’s going to be the motivation or the inspiration to say, ‘Oh, they are the right people, and you want to be with them or their club’.

“We are very receptive to listen to all the people because every single conversation we can learn from and maybe we can see a motivation to go with them.”

For more news relating to Spurs, visit our sister site Spurs Live.
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