Football News

Mauricio Pochettino: Tottenham now have the best stadium in world football

By Ben Green

Published: 20:10, 24 March 2019

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino believes the club have the best stadium in world football following the unveiling of their new 62,062-capacity venue. 

The club staged the first event at their new £1billion stadium on Sunday with around 30,000 fans cheering on an Under-18 match between Spurs and Southampton.

When is Spurs’ first match at the new stadium? Five key things to know…

  1. Spurs’ first mandatory match took place on Sunday with the club’s Under 18s taking on rivals Southampton.
  2. The next test event will take place on March 30 with Spurs Legends facing and Inter Milan side.
  3. If all goes according to plan, Pochettino will lead his players out at their new home on April 3 against Crystal Palace.
  4. The stadium was due to open in September but delays ensued due to various safety issues.
  5. It was then pencilled in for January or February but was postponed further, and the club has since provisionally confirmed Palace as their first opponents.

The home side ran out 3-1 winners against the Saints, with 17-year-old J’Neil Lloyd-Bennett netting the first goal at the stadium, heralding the start of a new era in north London.

Pochettino made a guest appearance during half time of the inaugural match and the Argentine spoke in awe of his new home.

He said: “We all feel the same. It’s so exciting. I got the same feeling on the last day when we left White Hart Lane.

“We were crying. The same feeling here at the new stadium. We are almost crying.

“It’s going to be a massive impact for the team to have all the fans and that feeling. It’s our new house but we’re going to create a new home and that is different.

“White Hart Lane was magic but I feel that this new stadium is the best in the world. I really believe that the future of the club is going to be fantastic.”

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A crucial few months

All the excitement towards the new stadium has provided some much-needed respite in north London with the club about to embark on a gruelling few months.

For the stadium to truly flourish Champions League football will be essential next season, but that is not guaranteed for Pochettino.

At present the club are third in the Premier League table but only three points above fifth-placed Manchester United, and they have some ominous fixtures fast approaching.

After the international break Spurs travel to Liverpool before facing two home fixtures against Crystal Palace – the first at the new stadium – and Huddersfield.

There are certainly some extremely tricky opponents coming up, not to mention the potential for a few banana skins, and all this in the midst of a stadium change, which could either bring fresh impetus or disrupt the side’s rhythm.

Should they fail to secure a top-four finish then they will have to pull it out of the bag and win the Champions League, where they face Man City in the quarter-finals next month.

It is certainly an exciting period for the club, but it is now time for Pochettino to put the stadium talk to one side and ensure the club finishes the season on a high note.