By Harry Sykes
Jay Rodriguez has revealed that Mauricio Pochettino personally contacted him after his recent two-goal salvo for Southampton against Bournemouth.
Tottenham manager Pochettino, who managed Rodriguez at St Mary’s Stadium for 18 months until moving to White Hart Lane in the summer of 2014, phoned the striker, 27, to congratulate him on his display.
It was a gesture appreciated by the former Burnley forward, who missed nearly two seasons due to ligament problems and has only recently won his place back in the Southampton team.
His goal against Sunderland on 27 August was his first in 29 months but it was his double in the south coast derby on 18 December that proved he was back in the big time.
“Mauricio is the best coach, the best manager and best person I’ve ever worked with,” Rodriguez said of the call, as quoted by the Times on Wednesday. “He knows how much I appreciate what he has done and what he still does for me. He constantly speaks to me. He is still supporting me and his staff are the same. He is an unbelievable manager and a person.”
Rodriguez was named in the Southampton starting XI for their League Cup semi-final first leg clash against Liverpool on Wednesday night.
He was selected as part of a front three alongside Nathan Redmond and Dusan Tadic.
The striker, who won a single England cap before suffering horrendous injury problems, has scored four goals this season from 19 matches as he tries to get his career back on track.
He has a fine record for Southampton, scoring 33 goals and supplying 11 assists in 111 appearances, of which 24 strikes have come in 92 Premier League matches.
In other Tottenham transfer news, a striker has signed after Spurs agreed terms.