By Richard Parks

Gary Neville has told Sky Sports that manager Mauricio Pochettino is the real superstar at Tottenham and that he’s “keeping the wolves from Daniel Levy’s door”.

Fourth-placed Spurs took a step closer to qualifying for the Champions League for a third consecutive season after Monday’s win over Watford opened up a five-point gap from fifth-placed Chelsea, with three Premier League games to go.

Manchester United legend Neville hailed the huge achievement of Pochettino, whose transfer net spend is only £50 million since he arrived in June 2014, compared to £496 million for champions Manchester City and £417million for Manchester United over the same period.

Neville told Sky Sports: “Tottenham are outperforming season on season and I think Pochettino is keeping the wolves from Daniel Levy’s door with the job that he is doing.

When Jose Mourinho’s time at Manchester United has finished, whether that is one year, two year or three years, and I hope he wins multiple league titles because I think he is a fantastic manager, this is the guy that I would want to manage the club I support.

“That’s because I think he is the guy who deserves it. I think it is the same for Paris Saint-Germain and I think it’s the same for Real Madrid. And I think that Daniel Levy knows that.

“That is coming in the next 12 months for Tottenham and it is a big problem if he leaves because he is extracting the maximum from limited resources.”

Football Insider verdict:

It is little wonder that Neville is championing the contribution of Pochettino, the manager who has transformed Spurs from mediocre middling team to Champions League regulars. All while playing eyecatching football and on a budget dwarfed by rivals. Tottenham have an exciting side that is consistently delivering the goods, but there is a sense it could all fall apart at the seams due to the escalating costs of the new stadium the club move into next season. Speculation is intense that Toby Alderweireld, Danny Rose and Mousa Dembele will head a mass exodus this season, but the talent drain would move to an entirely different level were Pochettino, the man with the dugout midas touch, to leave for pastures new. The Argentine alchemist is a brilliant manager and one whom Spurs are lucky to have. Were he available on the market, the queue of interested clubs would stretch all along the Seven Sisters Road.

In other Tottenham news, the club have blown Manchester United out of the water to seal the signing of 2018, with many claiming the deal is now done.

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