Pochettino explains what was special about Tottenham's Atletico Madrid defeat

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

The Argentine was delighted with so many from the club's academy impressing against the Spaniards.

Tottenham manager Mauricio PochettinoTottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino may have been disappointed to see his Spurs side slip to a 1-0 defeat against Champions League runners up Atletico Madrid on Friday, but speaking to the club's website after the game, he was quick to point out one aspect of the match that left him especially delighted.

Though Tottenham's brief visit to Australia ended with two narrow defeats, Pochettino is absolutely right to point to the performances of the young players that impressed so much in Melbourne.

Against Atletico especially, Spurs were dominant, hitting the post twice and forcing goalkeeper Jan Oblak into a series of saves.

"Oblak was Man of the Match – that was clear," he told the club's website. "And when the opponents’ goalkeeper is Man of the Match it’s because you’ve created chances and played well.

"I’m happy because we finished with nine players who have come through the Academy and against Atletico Madrid, that is special.

"It was fantastic a experience for us - training hard, a lot of positives and I’m happy with the performance of the whole team and especially the younger players. It was great experience for them to improve and learn."

The nine academy graduates that finished the match were Luke McGee in goal; Will Miller, Anton Walkes, Cameron Carter-Vickers and Kyle Walker-Peters in defence and Ryan Mason, Tom Carroll, Dominic Ball and Marcus Edwards in midfield. Only Heung-Min Son and Nacer Chadli didn't come from the academy of the eleven that wrapped up the 90 minutes.

Four graduates started the game too. Walkes and Carter-Vickers, who played the whole match, Josh Onomah and Harry Winks.

Tottenham players pose for a team group photo before the matchTottenham players pose for a team group photo before the match

In an age where some Premier League sides field teams completely made up of expensive transfers from outside of the UK, Tottenham's commitment to investing in homegrown talent is good for the club and for English football.

What was startling to consider is that this Spurs side was also absent of the five England internationals that went to the European Championships this summer, two of which, Harry Kane and Danny Rose, also came through the academy.

If you consider that another academy graduate, Nabil Bentaleb, didn't make the squad for the tour, then Spurs have an astonishing number of homegrown players who are in or around the first team, especially as the North Londoners are one of the best teams in the country.

Certainly a good reason to be upbeat heading into the season, and beyond the impending campaign by the looks of it.

Tottenham manager Mauricio PochettinoTottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino in Melbourne

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