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'Pochettino gets into players' heads'

ESPN staff
May 27, 2014 « Januzaj makes Belgium debut as Lukaku scores hat-trick | Rankin considered future after nervy Ashes experience »
ESPN FC: Spurs look to sign Pochettino

Southampton defender Nathaniel Clyne says it would be a "real shame" to lose manager Mauricio Pochettino after the Argentinian revolutionised the way his players approach games.

Pochettino is reportedly in advanced talks to become Tottenham's new manager after the north London club decided to part ways with Tim Sherwood.

The 42-year-old, who previously managed Espnayol, led Southampton to an eighth-place Premier League finish. Clyne says Pochettino has changed his players' mentalities and it would be a huge loss if the manager left.

"He has been so different to any other manager," Clyne told the Daily Mirror. "He planted it into our heads that even if we were up against bigger teams and bigger players, we could compete at the same level as them. He taught us never to fear them or be intimidated just because of their big names or their big reputations.

"He'd have us pressing high, keeping a high line, receiving the ball in difficult situations, keeping possession and basically having the confidence to play football rather than being afraid.

"The understanding in our defence was down to our training. We worked really hard on our fitness and our intensity and it showed in the games. For me personally it took my game to another level. It would be a real shame if we were to lose him."

Southampton striker Jay Rodriguez, who is currently recovering from a knee injury that prevented him joining England's World Cup squad, told the Southern Daily Echo last week that Pochettino's future was "up in the air."

Rodriguez said: "He is unbelievable. Anyone will say what a great manager he is and what a good guy he is, to see how well he's done with the type of football we're playing. He's worked us hard and we've seen the benefits from it so I think he's a great manager and I love playing under him."

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