By Richard Parks
Mauricio Pochettino hailed Roy Keane as a great footballer but refused to respond to his jibe about Tottenham’s “embarrassing” trophy drought.
The Manchester United and Republic of Ireland legend delivered a typically outspoken verdict on Spurs in the wake of their memorable 2-2 Champions League draw against Juventus in midweek.
Pochettino has been widely hailed for transforming the fortunes since taking charge of the club in the summer of 2014 but the last time they won silverware was the League Cup triumph under Juande Ramos in 2008.
Asked for his response to Keane’s jibe, the Spurs manager refused to get drawn into a war of words.
“It’s his opinion,” said Pochettino, as quoted by the personal Twitter account of football journalist Paul Brown. “I loved watching Roy play. So passionate. But nothing to say about his opinion. If he puts some adjective in his comment it’s up to him.”
Poch on Roy Keane’s comment that #thfc trophy drought is “embarrassing”: “It’s his opinion. I loved watching Roy play. So passionate. But nothing to say about his opinion. If he puts some adjective in his comment it’s up to him.” #mufc
— Paul Brown (@pbsportswriter) February 16, 2018
Keane was critical of both Spurs and Liverpool following their impressive performances in the Champions League in midweek.
Jurgen Klopp’s side destroyed Porto 5-0 away from home with a performance that suggested they could be contenders for Europe’s biggest prize as they all but secured a quarter-final spot.
Tottenham also have an excellent opportunity to make the last eight after coming from two goals down at the home of last season’s beaten finalists.
Keane believes both clubs have much still to do.
“Well a club certainly the size of Liverpool and Tottenham, one trophy in ten years is pretty embarrassing,” said Keane on ITV’s Champions League Highlight show.
“I know the Champions League has took over now, particularly because of the money behind it. But is success about, particularly about the clubs just mentioned, getting your hands on trophies?
“Absolutely. Liverpool and Spurs should be able to compete in the Champions League, certainly qualify, and then win the FA or League Cup.”
In other Tottenham news, Daniel Levy has jetted off on a transatlantic mission to seal a sensational £20million-a-year Spurs deal.
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