Unai Emery reached the milestone of 50 Premier League matches in charge of Arsenal on Saturday in the 2-0 defeat at Leicester City, but an overriding sense of disappointment is all he has managed to establish at the club.

Emery arrived in 2018 as Arsene Wenger's replacement, with the Frenchman ultimately paying the price for going 14 years without winning the title.

In fairness to Wenger, spending at the club was significantly reduced in the wake of their move to the Emirates Stadium, particularly when compared to the likes of Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Liverpool over the same period.

It was hoped Emery's introduction would bring a fresh approach and winning mentality after years of stagnation at Arsenal. However, despite his trophy successes in previous spells with Sevilla and Paris Saint-Germain, some – justifiably – had doubts about the Spaniard's style of play and training methods often criticised as boring.

After reaching 50 Premier League games, it is difficult at present to see him lasting much longer and his record compared to the division's best highlights the gulf in class.

Going backwards after Wenger

Emery's Arsenal have averaged 1.74 points per game across his 50 matches in the top flight. Of those in charge of the traditional 'big six', that figure is only better than Mauricio Pochettino (1.7) and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (1.30) over their 50 most recent Premier League games – though the latter's figures are obviously skewed by his spell at Cardiff City.

That's where the positives end in terms of points per game for Emery, however.

Jurgen Klopp (2.62) and Pep Guardiola (2.52) are way out in front over their past 50 matches, while Frank Lampard – who has only taken charge of 12 in the Premier League – has accumulated a respectable 2.17 points per outing.

Similarly, Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers has done significantly better, averaging 1.84 points per game across his last 50 matches in the Premier League with Liverpool and the Foxes.

But the real kicker is the comparison with the much-maligned Wenger, whose 1.76 average means he too collected more points over his final 50 games at Arsenal than Emery has in his first 50.

Way behind the most prolific scorers

Wenger's Arsenal also scored more than Emery's side. During the Frenchman's final 50 games, they scored 96 times, seven more than they have with the Basque coach.

City have set the bar in terms of scoring over the period in question, netting 130 times, 12 more than Liverpool.

Defensively it is the other way round. While City's record of 33 allowed is exceptional, Liverpool's is even better at just 31.

Arsenal's defensive woes have been well-documented under Emery, with Shkodran Mustafi, David Luiz, Rob Holding, Calum Chambers and Sokratis Papastathopoulos hardly convincing.

As such, they have conceded 68 times since the start of last season, more than double both City and Liverpool and four more than in Wenger's final stretch.

Emery's already had enough time to solve issues

Emery can at least point to the fact he has lost fewer matches (13) than Wenger (16) did over the periods highlighted, though it's a pretty hollow victory.

Klopp and Liverpool again set the standard here, having lost just one of their past 50 Premier League matches, though even Rodgers has been beaten fewer times than Emery over his 50 most recent games, losing 12.

The overarching issue for Arsenal and Emery is a complete lack of identity, something one can certainly argue they still had even in Wenger's latter days.

While these statistics highlight how far behind the Premier League's leading pair Arsenal are, their lack of a discernible style and direction is arguably the main problem, one Emery probably will not get much more time to fix.

After all, there is little doubt they have regressed under his stewardship.

Tottenham head coach Mauricio Pochettino said it is "impossible to feel happy" after his side struggled to a 1-1 draw against Sheffield United.

George Baldock cancelled out Son Heung-min's opener 12 minutes from time in Saturday's clash to leave Tottenham winless in the Premier League since September.

Pochettino's men have taken just three points from the last 15 on offer and the Argentine conceded his side did not deserve anything more against their impressive opponents.

"It was an even game, a difficult one for us - they are a very good, organised team," he told BBC Sport. "It was difficult to play in the first half, but second half we were better. Overall, it's a fair result.

"We knew very well how they play - they got a draw in Chelsea and they are playing so well. The most difficult thing for us was to match their energy. In the second half we were much better and matched them. I think they deserve one point.

"I need to look forward and keep working and try to improve. We are not in a good position in the table. Always when you don't win you are disappointed and it’s impossible to feel happy."

A third 1-1 draw in four league matches leaves Tottenham in the bottom half of the table and Pochettino added: "The reality is that for different reasons we are not showing the performances that we expect.

"We try to build confidence, the team is in a period where we are finding the best balance. I need to look forward and keep working and try to improve. We are not in a good position in the table."

Tanguy Ndombele was substituted at half-time due to a groin injury and Pochettino felt his side struggled in the France midfielder's absence.

"We need to assess him. He felt pain in his groin," Pochettino said. "We don't know if it happened before or during the game but he said he was OK to play during the game. 

"Then he came off at half-time and the doctor said to me that can't play. I think it affected the team."

United midfielder Baldock equalised via a mishit cross, 16 minutes after team-mate David McGoldrick had a goal disallowed by VAR for offside against John Lundstram.

The officials took almost four minutes to adjudge that Lundstram, who had earlier hit the post with the sides level, was marginally offside in the build-up to McGoldrick's finish.

Visiting boss Chris Wilder accepted the decision but has questioned why it took so long for play to resume.

"I think in certain things you have to go to the process and have a big look at it in the summer," he said at his post-match press conference.

"It's here to stay and there's no doubt about it. I went to Everton to watch them play Spurs and the amount of time it took was too much. It's changed the game and obviously it's going to create debate.

"The length of the stoppage doesn't do anyone any good. If it's offside then we have to deal with it."

Moussa Sissoko is at a loss to explain Tottenham's lacklustre Premier League form after Mauricio Pochettino's men laboured to a 1-1 draw at home to Sheffield United.

Son Heung-min's 58th-minute opener looked to have been swiftly cancelled out after David McGoldrick netted for the Blades but a marginal VAR call went against John Lundstrum earlier in the move.

Spurs could not make the most of that reprieve as George Baldock netted a deserved 78th-minute leveller, extending the north London club's winless run in the Premier League to five matches.

"In the league we are struggling since the beginning of the season. Why? I don't know because we are trying our best but it is not working," France midfielder Sissoko said.

"We see today it was a difficult game against a good team. We were winning 1-0 but didn't keep the score. We have a lot of frustration but need to keep going.

"We have to stick together, like we said every time, and try to work hard."

It will be almost two months since their previous Premier League victory when Tottenham return from an international break Sissoko hopes will serve as an opportunity to reset.

"Every team can have some difficult moments," he added. "We are struggling in the league and that's football.

"We must keep working, give our best every day until everything turns around

"We will fight until the end. We know we can do better

"Now we are going away with the international teams and we have to come back stronger."

Sheffield United shrugged off being on the sharp end of more VAR controversy to claim a deserved 1-1 draw at Tottenham.

Son Heung-min, back in action after his three-match ban for the tackle that left Everton midfielder Andre Gomes with a badly broken ankle was overturned, gave Spurs the lead against the run of play following an Enda Stevens error in the 58th minute.

David McGoldrick saw an equaliser ruled out after John Lundstram – who hit the post during the first half – was adjudged to be offside during the build-up.

But Chris Wilder's men impressively retained their composure and George Baldock's 78th-minute cross zipping into the far corner was a touch of fortune they richly deserved.

Tottenham's Paulo Gazzaniga was the busier of the two goalkeepers early on, holding a testing low drive from John Fleck after tipping Oliver Norwood's deflected second-minute strike over.

Harry Kane was unable to turn in Serge Aurier's 15th-minute cross at the near post but it proved a rare moment of encouragement for Spurs during an opening half hour that concluded with Lundstram thumping against the upright left footed.

United resumed on the front foot after half-time, Lys Mousset romping into the box and twisting around Davinson Sanchez before pulling his effort agonisingly wide.

Son was increasingly Spurs' lone outlet and gave visiting keeper Dean Henderson his first significant piece of work, arrowing a shot towards the bottom corner after Dele Alli's raking pass.

A more precise ball into the South Korea star's path led to the opener – only it came inadvertently from United defender Stevens, who gave Son an opportunity he was never likely to pass up.

McGoldrick thought he had an instant response but, after a VAR review lasting almost four minutes, Lundstram was shown to be offside by the barest of margins earlier in the move.

Justice was done as another methodical Blades move got wing-back Baldock in position in the right channel, his sliced delivery evading Eric Dier and Gazzaniga to edge Wilder's men up to fifth in the table.

Mauricio Pochettino says Tottenham's Premier League position is not a surprise and fears the club cannot move forward quickly.

Last season's Champions League finalists are 11th in the table after 11 games, having won just three times in the top flight this season.

Away form has been a particular problem, with Spurs having not won on the road in the league since January 20, while injury-time goals have cost them in recent visits to Liverpool and Everton.

Their domestic travails have not been echoed in Europe, though, with Wednesday's 4-0 defeat of Red Star Belgrade meaning they will progress to the last 16 of the Champions League if they beat Olympiacos on matchday five.

Pochettino believes there are plenty of positive signs within the club, who are being profiled this season by Amazon as part of their All or Nothing documentary series, but he suggests they have nonetheless regressed towards the standards of 2014, when he took charge.

"It's our reality. With all the circumstances, I think it's normal to be in the position we are," he said on Friday.

"We are working, trying to perform better and get better results. I have mentioned the circumstances. We are in the right direction to find the balance in the squad, the right way to perform, and we do as well as we can.

"Today is still so early. If we are able to find the right balance and perform in the way that we expect, of course it's still there, It's possible. We need to make sure we have the time to get everything right.

"We went back to five years ago where we were in terms of position, situation and stuff like that. It takes time. We can't move the club forward quickly. There are so many things. The time is the problem. It's a natural process.

"We need to stay calm and, like always, work hard, because that is the way to change this dynamic. But the time is the time and the process is the process.

"It's different than five years ago, but with a lot of similarities. It's difficult to talk now because I don't want to talk again about negative things. I want to be positive. I promise you, if it's all going well at the end of the season, I will explain - for you, and for Amazon, too!

"But I want to be positive. I think the signals in the past few weeks have been very positive. I know very well that to have a positive spirit and provide a good mood for everyone is so important. I think we talk a lot and it's not helpful.

"Now, there are a lot of positive things that we need to speak about and keep going, keep moving. All the fans, the club deserve that we start winning games again to be in a better position. Of course, in the Champions League, we are in a very good position now. But I think in the Premier League table, we are not."

Pochettino also offered an update on Hugo Lloris, who is recovering from a dislocated elbow sustained against Brighton and Hove Albion.

Spurs confirmed on Thursday that the goalkeeper has had to have surgery on the injury, which had not been healing as hoped.

The France international had been due to return in early 2020 but there are now fears he could be sidelined for longer.

"I didn't see him the last week - he wasn't here," said Pochettino. "But he is strong, he's very mature, a man. Of course, he's suffering now a little bit but he's going to come strong again."

Son Heung-min's two-goal performance in Tottenham's 4-0 win over Red Star Belgrade confirmed his strong psychological state, according to Mauricio Pochettino.

South Korea star Son led Spurs to a convincing Champions League victory in Serbia three days on from his part in the incident that left Everton midfielder Andre Gomes with a fracture dislocation to his right ankle.

Son's challenge contributed to Gomes colliding with Serge Aurier and earned him a red card, which has since been rescinded.

The 27-year-old forward was visibly distressed after witnessing the extent of the sickening injury but held his starting spot and excelled in what was a crucial European encounter for Tottenham.

"He was affected like everyone, during the game and after the game. It is difficult to see a player suffering a massive injury," Pochettino said.

"He was involved, there was a bit of confusion in the action, with the decision to show the red card. He felt responsible, then when we concede with 10 men.

"But he wasn't guilty for the injury, and he showed that he is in a good state and mental level.

"Of course he is sorry about Andre, like everyone, but it was a big relief with the message from Andre on social media, which was good and positive, and Son is now training and recovering well."

Tottenham appear on course to reach the Champions League knockout stages but continue to struggle for form domestically.

Pochettino's men are winless in four Premier League games and sit 11th in the table, 10 points adrift of the top four.

The Spurs boss hopes the midweek taste of success can be the catalyst for a better run of results, beginning with Saturday's home game against Sheffield United.

"I hope yes, hopefully keep in the same way," he said. "It was a difficult game [in Belgrade]. The result, 4-0, looks easy, but in different periods we suffered and nearly conceded.

"They hit the post and there was an unbelievable save from Paulo [Gazzaniga] that could have changed the game.

"Always you need luck to score first and then have the capacity to control. I was happy after Everton and after Red Star, but we need to finish winning. But we know it will be tough against Sheffield."

Tottenham's date with the Blades takes place just over 24 hours before the much-anticipated Anfield showdown between Liverpool and Manchester City, of which Pochettino will be an excited observer.

"Of course. I love football," he said.

"I love different sports - I love tennis, I love paddle tennis, I love golf, but my priority is football and to have the possibility to watch the game on Sunday - I don't know if I will be home or where I will be - but for sure these two hours I will spend watching the game, because my priority is football."

Mauricio Pochettino warned his Tottenham players "it is only a small step" after they ended their barren away run with a 4-0 Champions League win at Red Star Belgrade.

Tottenham eased to all three points in Wednesday's clash thanks to a couple of goals from Son Heung-min and one apiece for Giovani Lo Celso and Christian Eriksen.

Victory for Tottenham was their first away from home since May 8, a run spanning nine matches in all competitions, and Pochettino wants his side to build on the three points.

"I think it was a great result away from home," he said at his post-match news conference. "We needed to have a game like this to recover our best feelings and give us confidence.

"The performance was very good in a very difficult place. I am so happy but we need to keep going. It is only a small step."

Tottenham became the first English side to win a Champions League match at Rajko Mitic Stadium, a year to the day since Liverpool suffered defeat there, making the victory all the more impressive in the eyes of Pochettino.

"We were preparing, very conscious of how Liverpool suffered here last year," he said. "We expected a very tough game and it was important to be aggressive and try to dominate and I thought our game in the opposition half was excellent. 

"There was also luck involved as we managed to score in the first half and they didn't."

Lo Celso opened the scoring for Tottenham in Belgrade on his full debut, while Tanguy Ndombele put in a good midfield shift and fellow newcomer Ryan Sessegnon continued his comeback from injury as a late substitute.

Pochettino was particularly pleased with the performance of Lo Celso, who had previously been restricted to six substitute appearances due to a hip injury.

"I think it was a very good display," he said. "Always it's difficult for a new player when he arrives, and after the team was very successful last season.

"He arrived at the end of the pre-season. The circumstances were that he was behind everyone, got injured with the national team and then it was about building his fitness and his confidence, and then waiting for the opportunity to be in the starting XI and feel the opportunity.

"I am happy because he is a very good player and his personality and character is great. Now he only needs time like Tanguy and Ryan. They are so young. 

"They arrive now to the team in difficult circumstances, not the best circumstances. That is why like I tell you always I don't expect too much, I am happy with that they provide to the team. They need time. I am happy with the players."

Second-placed Tottenham are four points better off than Red Star in Group B and can guarantee a place in the last 16 with victory at home to bottom side Olympiacos later this month.

Mauricio Pochettino never had any doubts Son Heung-min would have his red card for a tackle on Andre Gomes rescinded.

Son was sent off late on against Everton on Sunday after lunging in on Gomes, a challenge that saw the Portugal international land awkwardly and suffer a fracture dislocation to his right ankle.

Referee Martin Atkinson initially appeared set to show Son a yellow card but altered his decision to a red having seen Gomes' distress.

After a distraught Son headed down the tunnel, Everton equalised during 12 minutes of stoppage time as the points were shared in a 1-1 draw at Goodison Park.

Spurs boss Pochettino commented after the match that it was a harsh decision to send Son off, and a Tottenham appeal followed.

The Football Association confirmed on Tuesday the forward will now be available for Spurs' next three league outings.

"I was confident [the red card] would be overturned," Pochettino told a news conference ahead of Tottenham's Champions League clash with Red Star Belgrade.

"We were a bit confused after the game. It's completely fair that he's now not suspended.

"The only problem is that the VAR can check these things and it was clearly and obviously not a red card."

Pochettino confirmed after Sunday's match that Everton captain Seamus Coleman - who suffered a serious leg injury in 2017 - went to the away dressing room to comfort Son, who was "devastated".

"All the players for Tottenham, we feel so sorry," explained Pochettino, who included Son in his squad for the trip to Belgrade. 

"We're so happy with the news that everything was okay with his injury today [after surgery]. We hope he recovers soon.

"Sonny is okay. After the action, it was a mix of everything. It was an emotional moment for everyone. Now everyone is okay."

Harry Kane missed Sunday's match due to illness, but the stand-in Spurs captain will be fit to feature on Wednesday.

"I feel good, better than the weekend," Kane said. "I came down with some kind of virus, but I’ve been back in training yesterday and I feel much better.

 "The atmosphere is going to be very tough and very hostile but, once we're on the pitch, we have to focus on ourselves and do everything in our power to win the game."

Mauricio Pochettino vented his frustration over VAR after Son Heung-min was sent off for his challenge on Andre Gomes, with the Tottenham manager describing the red card as "unbelievable".

Everton's Gomes suffered a fracture dislocation to his right ankle after a tackle from Son saw the midfielder then collide with Serge Aurier in Sunday's 1-1 Premier League draw at Goodison Park.

Son, who was left distraught by the serious injury as he was consoled by team-mates and Everton players, was initially booked by referee Martin Atkinson before a VAR review deemed the challenge worthy of a red card.

"He was devastated," said Pochettino. "The players from Everton came to console him. I want to thank the captain, Coleman. He came to speak to Son. In the moment it was a little bit confusing, everyone knows on the pitch what happened, but no one believed it was intentional. When we watched on TV the outcome was very bad and we feel very sorry for Andre. The action was very bad luck.

"It was dreadful for Andre, but judge the action, not judge what happened after. We are very disappointed with this type of situation on VAR - it is there to help the referee not confuse the situation more. The referees need help. They need to go and check on the screen. In the end the decision changed everything, we were in control, we believed we were going to win the game, then we conceded the goal. 

"The VAR need to check if it was a bad tackle and not a bad injury. It was clear that it was never the intention of Son to create the problem that happens after. It was unbelievable he received the red card. I never complain about the VAR, but please - we need use it in the best way. It is going to change the spirit of football."

Pochettino added: "I was the first or only coach in the Premier League that was against the VAR.

"This type of situation, that you need to help because the decision of the referee was yellow card. It is creating a big, big mess. For me, I love that the referees are the boss on the pitch.

"We feel very disappointed. Then, everything changed. I think it was under control for Tottenham. Then we concede a goal playing with one less. It is very difficult to understand this type of situation happened."

Son Heung-min is "devastated" after hurting Everton midfielder Andre Gomes with a tackle in Sunday's 1-1 draw, Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino says.

Gomes was taken off on a stretcher with a serious-looking injury to his right leg after Son's challenge tripped him and led to the Portuguese colliding with Serge Aurier in the second half at Goodison Park.

Spurs forward Son, who was sent off by referee Martin Atkinson, was visibly distraught before being led down the tunnel, while players from both teams were clearly distressed by the incident.

Gomes' treatment, along with lengthy pauses for VAR checks of possible penalties, led to 12 minutes of additional time at the end of the second half, with Cenk Tosun scoring in the 97th minute to cancel out Dele Alli's opener.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the match, Pochettino said: "We feel very sorry. It was a very bad situation, very bad luck how he landed. We can send our best wishes and of course I am very devastated for the situation.

"It's not important, football; it's important for him. We can talk about football but always feeling bad, feeling sorry for the action. It was so, so difficult.

"The feeling changed in this moment. We were playing well, it was more close to the second goal for us. It's difficult to assess the last 10, 12 minutes, but talking only about football, I am happy with the performance, the way we competed.

"Sonny was devastated. During the situation, he was very confused, it was difficult to keep calm. After you watch the action on TV, [you can see] it was never his intention [to hurt Gomes].

"It was very, very bad luck for Andre, for the family and for Everton. We finish with a red card for Sonny and, of course, the condition of the game changed. In this situation, we defend well but then we concede. I'm disappointed for the result."

Alli, who appeared shaken by Gomes' injury, insisted Son would never attempt to injure a player deliberately.

"I didn't want to look too much at what happened. All I can do is send him my best wishes and wish him a quick recovery," he said to Sky Sports.

"Son is devastated, he's in tears but it’s not his fault. He's one of the nicest people you would want to meet and he's not like that. He can't even lift his head up he's crying that much in the dressing room."

Everton boss Marco Silva praised his players for battling back to draw the game, as they now wait for updates on Gomes, who was taken to hospital.

"He went to the hospital. Now, our medical staff is taking control of everything. They will give more information about the situation. We need to wait a little bit more to be more clear," he said.

"It's a bad moment for us as a group, as a team. We give all our support to Andre and his family as well. As a group, we have to keep the togetherness and the spirit we showed after that moment.

"I didn't see the moment yet. I saw it live, I didn't see anything more. I can't talk to you about the tackle, the things that happened after the tackle."

Out of work and looking for a job – Massimiliano Allegri could be poised for a return to the dugout.

Allegri left Juventus at the end of 2018-19 after guiding the Old Lady to five consecutive Serie A titles.

The Italian coach has been linked to Manchester United but, with Niko Kovac on the brink at Bayern Munich, Allegri could find himself in Bavaria.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN GO FOR ALLEGRI

Bayern Munich want former Juventus head coach Massimiliano Allegri to replace Niko Kovac, according to Corriere dello Sport.

Kovac is on the verge of being sacked after Bayern's humiliating 5-1 defeat to Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday, with the Bundesliga champions cancelling Sunday's public training session as pressure mounts.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and Ajax's Erik ten Hag have been linked but Bayern have reportedly identified the man to take over in Munich.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Mirror claims Manchester United are ready to hijack Liverpool's move for RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner. Champions League holders Liverpool have been linked to Werner, however, United want to bring the Germany international to Old Trafford in January.

Perth Glory are still optimistic they can lure Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Australia, reports The West Australian. After revealing an approach for Ibrahimovic on a guest-player contract, A-League side Perth have seen Serie A outfit Bologna confirm their interest in the 38-year-old striker ahead of the January transfer window. Ibrahimovic's LA Galaxy contract will expire before the end of the year.

Tottenham are eyeing a January swoop for Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana. With Hugo Lloris out injured, Spurs are on the lookout for a new keeper and £35million could see Eredivisie champions Ajax sell the Cameroon international.

- According to the Guardian, Arsenal have joined United and Juventus in the transfer chase for Salzburg sensation Erling Haaland.

- Mundo Deportivo says Barcelona have dropped their interest in Inter centre-back Milan Skriniar. The Slovakia international has established himself as one of the best defenders in the world since joined Inter in 2017.

United and Paris Saint-Germain are leading the race to sign Juventus midfielder Emre Can, according to Corriere dello Sport.

Mauricio Pochettino believes Dele Alli will recapture his best form but feels the "massive" pressure on the player is sometimes unfair.

The Tottenham attacking midfielder has been criticised for his performances during 2019, most recently by former Manchester United captain Roy Keane, who accused the England international of losing his "hunger".

Pochettino accepts Alli has not been playing at his best, but the Spurs manager has warned people not to expect too much from a player who is still in the early part of his career.

"We need to remember that Dele is so young and the demand, the pressure on him is massive," Pochettino told reporters on Friday. "Everyone expects big things: he's English, he's an international, but he's still 23 years old.

"He was fantastic, and of course he dropped a little bit in his performance, but we need to help and to back him, not to pay attention too much and try to improve and be strong again."

Pochettino's side head to Everton on Sunday having won only three of 13 matches in all competitions since they beat Aston Villa 3-1 on the opening day of the Premier League season.

They took an early lead against Liverpool last weekend but could not withstand the pressure from the leaders, eventually losing 2-1 to drop to 11th in the table.

However, Pochettino is calling for his players to be positive as they look to get their season back on track.

"It was an important week to recover feelings after a tough game against Liverpool," Pochettino said. "It was important again to create that atmosphere that you want. It's a situation that only we can fix, winning games.

"We need to be positive – that positivity makes us believe we can beat any team. At the moment, we struggle a little bit, we drop a lot in our confidence. The most important thing is how we're going to finish. It's not nice to see yourself in the middle of the table, but that is our reality and we need to accept it. If you do not accept reality, you're going to struggle.

"In our minds, we know very well we need time, to be strong, be solid, and start winning because that's going to be the best thing for us."

Giovani Lo Celso came on as a substitute against Liverpool and will hope for more minutes at Goodison Park as he continues to recover from a hip injury sustained on international duty in September.

The midfielder was called up to the Argentina squad for this month's matches against Brazil and Uruguay, and Pochettino admits he is "not happy" at the prospect of him being involved.

"In general, always managers want players at home," Pochettino said. "For him, it's going to be tough because, again, when he's nearly fit to start again, he needs to go away and changing the dynamic of the training session, something can happen.

"Being honest, I am not happy, but I accept [it] because I always defend the national team and I always back the decision of the national team. I was a player – I know how it feels to play for your flag. What can I do? Nothing, only to show or describe my feelings."

Ryan Sessegnon may also hope to be involved against Everton, having yet to feature since his move from Fulham, but Pochettino is wary of rushing him back from a long-term hamstring problem.

"We are assessing all the players. We'll see. We have training tomorrow and we travel to Liverpool. We'll see if he can be involved or not," the Tottenham manager said.

"I cannot say he is complete in the way that you'd say, 'OK, we can trust him to play 90 minutes', but we have a big squad and sometimes it's difficult to give the possibility. He has to work hard: he's still young, it was a big injury, but for sure he's going to have the possibility to play in the future."

Mauricio Pochettino's Tottenham may have been humiliated 7-2 by Bayern Munich in the Champions League, but he is a target for the German giants.

With Niko Kovac overseeing an inconsistent start to the season in Munich, Bayern are reportedly willing to move on from the former Eintracht Frankfurt boss.

That could open the door for Pochettino, whose Tottenham have struggled to reach the heights of last season following their memorable run to the Champions League final.

 

TOP STORY – BAYERN CONSIDER POCH

Bayern Munich are considering Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino as a replacement for Niko Kovac, according to Sport1.

Kovac has found himself under increasing criticism following Bayern's inconsistent start to the season.

Ajax head coach Erik ten Hag – who previously worked with Bayern's reserve team – has also been linked, but sporting director Hasan Salihamidzic has reportedly identified Pochettino as the man to replace Kovac should he depart.

 

ROUND-UP

- According to Mundo Deportivo, Atletico Madrid are eyeing Napoli's Faouzi Ghoulam. The left-back is out of favour and set to leave the Serie A outfit in January.

- Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain are keen to sign Borussia Dortmund's Lukasz Piszczek and Juventus midfielder Emre Can, claims Soccerlink. Piszczek's contract expires at the end of the season, while Can is reportedly eager to leave after being left out of Juve's Champions League squad.

- Sport Bild says Liverpool have joined the race to sign Valencia sensation Ferran Torres. The 19-year-old winger has attracted interest from Dortmund and Barcelona.

Arkadiusz Milik has agreed a contract extension with Napoli, reports Calciomercato. The Poland international's current deal runs out in 2021.

- Former AC Milan boss Gennaro Gattuso is favourite to take charge of Udinese. It comes as Sky Sport Italia, Tuttomercatoweb and La Gazzetta dello Sport claim Igor Tudor's position is being considered after consecutive 7-1 and 4-0 routs in Serie A.

Dortmund have set their sights on Hertha Berlin's Javairo Dilrosun, according to Bild. As the German side reportedly prepare for life without Jadon Sancho amid ongoing links to Manchester United, former Manchester City youth-team player Dilrosun is on their radar.

Mauricio Pochettino believes Liverpool were awarded a "soft" penalty in their 2-1 Premier League victory against Tottenham but accepted the referee's decision to point to the spot.

Sunday's clash at Anfield was poised at 1-1 when referee Anthony Taylor adjudged that Spurs full-back Serge Aurier had fouled Sadio Mane inside the box.

Mohamed Salah converted the subsequent spot-kick 15 minutes from time to complete Liverpool's comeback win after Jordan Henderson had cancelled out Harry Kane's 47-second opener.

Tottenham manager Pochettino feels the call was a little harsh on his side, who end the weekend in 11th place following their fourth league defeat of the campaign.

"I don't want to complain - I need to accept the decision of the referee and the VAR," he said at his post-match news conference. "Technically maybe it's a penalty because there's some contact. But to be honest, the ball is going away.

"It's an action that you know is very soft. The penalty was given and we need to accept it's the decision of the referee or the VAR."

Son Heung-min was instrumental in creating Kane's early goal and struck the crossbar early in the second half with Tottenham still in front.

However, Henderson equalised for Liverpool four minutes later and Pochettino was left to rue what could have been.

"This season, we have deserved to get more points in the table," he said. "These things happen and that is the moment to stay stronger. 

"Maybe in different seasons this type of situation results in 2-0 or 3-0 for us in the second half but today it was a different way."

Tottenham find themselves in the bottom half of the Premier League in November for the first time since 2014, but Pochettino is not blaming his players for their disappointing start to the campaign and wants them to stay united.

"I am behind our squad, supporting them fully," he said. "We have 29 players and they will all have the opportunity to play. After five years and a half at Tottenham it is a time to all be together and show our support.

"It was a very competitive game today and we competed well. I am of course a little bit disappointed in that with the ball we didn't have the possession in playing and forcing them to play deeper. In that aspect I'm disappointed but we competed and we need to keep pushing.

"We were playing today against a very good team. I think Liverpool are one of the best teams in Europe and we were very competitive."

Harry Kane admitted Tottenham missed a chance to build on their midweek Champions League victory when they let slip an early lead in their 2-1 defeat at Liverpool.

After the England striker put the visitors ahead just 47 seconds into the game, he watched as second-half goals from Jordan Henderson and Mohamed Salah turned the contest in Liverpool's favour.

Spurs went into the game on the back of a 5-0 victory over Red Star Belgrade, with head coach Mauricio Pochettino describing his side's performance in the Champions League as a small step forward.

Kane dismissed the suggestion that Spurs continued their progress at Anfield, where defeat condemned them to a place in the bottom half of the Premier League table after 10 games.

Assessing the defeat, which was Tottenham's third in five league games, the 26-year-old striker told Sky Sports: "You saw the way we started the game: we came out with the intention to press, to play, and it helps that we got an early goal.

"We tried to do everything to win the game and it didn't quite go our way. It hurts, but it's hard to put a finger on it now.

"Whenever you lose a game it's never a step forward. It's disappointing. We want to pick our form up in the Premier League. It's not been good enough.

"All we can do now is look forward to Everton away next week."

Pochettino did not contest the penalty decision that saw Serge Aurier penalised for a foul on Sadio Mane.

Aurier won the ball from Mane but the Senegal international then stepped in front of his leg as he went to strike the ball and drew a foul from the Spurs defender.

Pochettino told BBC Sport: "I've got no complaints about the penalty. You can have your own opinion. It was a fair reaction.

"We tried in the last 10 or 15 minutes [to score an equaliser] and had chances but it was impossible."

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