Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has said recent comments made by Kieran Trippier while on international duty regarding his departure were misconstrued.
The 28-year-old England full-back swapped north London for Atlético Madrid in a deal worth £20m in the summer subsequently ending a four-year association with the Lilywhites whom he initially joined from Burnley.
Trippier’s long goodbye: Five key things to know…
- Trippier joined Spurs from Burnley in 2015 and would go on to make 114 appearances for the club.
- He endured a sharp dip in form last season with many questioning his future in north London.
- A number of top European clubs, including Juventus, were reportedly linked with him before he signed for Atlético Madrid.
- There were suggestions from Trippier that chairman Daniel Levy never gave him an answer regarding his future.
- However, Pochettino revealed he was sent a message from Trippier clarifying those comments.
Trippier, who usurped Kyle Walker as Spurs’ first choice right-back, saw a sharp dip in form last season and struggled to maintain a regular starting berth under Pochettino which sowed the seeds for an inevitable departure.
During the recent international break Trippier outlined the story behind his transfer, suggesting chairman Daniel Levy never gave him an answer when he was asked about his future.
“I heard rumours about them selling me and it’s not nice but it happens and it’s football,” he said. “I tried to speak to the chairman, I just didn’t really get an answer. Tottenham got rid of me at the wrong time.”
However, once it went to print, Trippier reportedly sent Pochettino a text to clarify those comments suggesting his words were “twisted” – though the Argentine tactician never received the message.
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“I didn’t see [Trippier’s comments], but I heard about it. I can explain how I feel. We had a conversation where he explained he was going to move to Atletico Madrid – nothing more,” he told reporters.
“Yesterday (Wednesday) when Harry Kane arrived back he said to me ‘did you get Kieran’s text?’ I said ‘no’ because I changed my number. Maybe because he doesn’t have the new number.
“Because he believes his words were twisted – I don’t know nothing more. Kieran translated this message to me through Harry Kane. He wanted to tell me. But I’ve got no problem with Kieran.
“In football decisions happen and players move from one club to another. What happened, happened and we need to move on and he needs to think of Atletico Madrid and be happy there.
“There’s no point to talk about if something happened or didn’t happen. The reality is one reality, but who is right in all this process? There’s no point in talking. But I keep very good memories from him.
“After the summer he came to see me, he asked me for a meeting and said ‘gaffer, I think I have a good possibility and for different reasons I would like to accept the offer from Atletico Madrid’.”