Mauricio Pochettino plays down impact of poor Wembley pitch ahead of Tottenham's clash with PSV Eindhoven

The patchy surface attracted widespread criticism during Monday's game against Manchester City

Monday 05 November 2018 16:40 GMT
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Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino expects the condition of the Wembley pitch to have improved ahead of his side's Champions League game with PSV Eindhoven.

The playing surface at the national stadium was in shocking condition for last Monday's Premier League defeat to Manchester City, which was played 24 hours after an NFL game.

Large sections of the pitch were brown, the surface was uneven and the NFL logos and distance markings were still visible.

Uefa were due to inspect its condition ahead of PSV's scheduled training session on Monday night, with the chance it could be moved if officials feel the warm-up may worsen the surface for the match. Pochettino has seen images of the pitch, though, and says it is on the mend.

“I think it'll improve a little bit – they're working so hard to improve it,” he said. “I saw pictures, I think it's better. The condition will be the same for both sides. Nothing to complain about.”

Hosting multiple sporting events is taking its toll on the Wembley pitch

The state of the Wembley pitch has fuelled anger among Spurs supporters at the series of delays to the completion of the club’s new stadium at White Hart Lane.

Pochettino has also voiced his frustration at the slow progress of the final stages of the project, but he praised the fans for showing patience with the club.

“We cannot ask more from them,” he added. “We, the club, [chairman] Daniel [Levy] we feel sorry for them. Of course, we all expected to be in the new stadium in this period. We can only be grateful as to be at Wembley for them is tougher than it is for us.

“We hope we can pay back all the effort by winning [against PSV]. It's the only way we can repay them.”

In the meantime, Spurs defender Ben Davies would not be drawn on whether his side would have the advantage over PSV when it comes to playing on the poor Wembley surface.

“We've played on it before and we know what it's like but it's the same pitch for both sides,” he said. “We've both got to play on it.”

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