Tottenham midfielder Harry Winks paid tribute to Mauricio Pochettino on talkSPORT just hours before he was sacked as manager.
Winks admitted he owes much of his current success to the coach who brought him into the senior Spurs squad, and said he will be ‘forever thankful’ for the coach.
Harry Winks has gone from academy player to Spurs regular and a full England international under the wing of Pochettino
Fans were left in shock when the club
confirmed Pochettino’s departure on Tuesday evening, with Jose Mourinho swiftly announced as his replacement early on Wednesday morning.
Pochettino is Spurs’ most successful manager in the Premier League era, leading the club to four consecutive top-four finishes and to an unprecedented Champions League final.
But they have also struggled for consistent form for the whole of the calendar year, winning only 11 of their 30 top-flight games in 2019.
The team currently sit 14th in the Premier League, and Mourinho has been drafted in to save their season and take them to the next level.
Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has said Mourinho can ‘inspire’ their struggling squad and ‘bring energy and belief to the dressing room’
Winks joined talkSPORT for an exclusive interview just hours before the announcement of Pochettino’s departure.
And, probably without knowing it, he paid a fitting tribute to the manager who has transformed not only his career but the entire club’s fortunes during his five-and-a-half years in charge.
“I’ve said many times and I will always say it, I’ve got everything to thank the gaffer for,” the 23-year-old told talkSPORT host Jim White.
“He gave me the opportunity and I wouldn’t be who I am today if it wasn’t for him.
“Of course I’ve had to work hard to get here, but getting that opportunity in the first place is always difficult.
“I’m forever thankful to the manager for giving me that opportunity.”