Mauricio Pochettino has revealed that he’s not playing enforcer Toby Alderweireld on merit at his pre-match press conference on Friday, and fans have taken to Twitter to react.
After claiming that he wasn’t fit enough to play, before the centre-back put in 90-minutes for Belgium v Saudi Arabia, Pochettino has now said that it’s down to the defender’s form.
The brutal comments were made on Friday morning and quoted by Football.London journalist Alasdair Gold.
Poch on Toby Alderweireld :"He needs to wait like different players and push. For me, like every manager, it's about performance, training sessions, form during the season and then you pick your starting XI. He needs to keep pushing and of course the team is in very good form."
— Alasdair Gold (@AlasdairGold) April 6, 2018
Tottenham fans took to Twitter to react to the latest twist in the Alderweireld saga, with one saying this was Pochettino putting him on the “naughty step”.
Alderweireld has been the subject of a long-running will he/won’t he sign a new contract and this seems to be the upshot – sign or you’re sidelined.
With that in mind, one Spurs fan said it looked like he wouldn’t play for Tottenham again.
However, another said it was more down to the form of Davinson Sanchez in the centre of defence.
Either way the narrative has changed over Alderweireld and it will be interesting to see if the defender does make another appearance before the end of the season.
Here are the best reactions from Tottenham fans to Pochettino’s brutal remarks:
Ah, the naughty step
— Bateseyboy (@Bateseyboy) April 6, 2018
I hope Toby takes inspiration from Lamela.
— Aakash Shah (@aakash_shah94) April 6, 2018
Bye, Toby #THFC
— Simon Lipson (@Mottle12) April 6, 2018
Poch is right ????
— Mark Carmody (@y13ddo) April 6, 2018
Clearly not focused and thinking about his move. Needs to get himself fit and be professional
— Ben Richman (@rocketrichman) April 6, 2018
I think it's less about Toby, and more about the strong performance of Sanchez and the team formation with 4 at the back. Dier can slot into back 2 if needed + wanyama in midfield so doesnt add much as a bench option either compared to attacking options. Never rushes players back
— Bradley Grant (@mrbradleygrant) April 6, 2018
Sounds like he is never playing again! ????
— Mick (@mickeybobin) April 6, 2018
Regardless whatever happens over his future, hard to watch this compilation of Toby Alderweireld and not acknowledge he’s been very easily one of the best defenders we’ve had at our club.
— Last Word On Spurs???? (@LastWordOnSpurs) April 6, 2018
In other Tottenham news, Levy close to wrapping up deal of the season for Spurs, expert claims ‘likely’ to happen soon