Mauricio Pochettino explains why Nabil Bentaleb has been banished from Tottenham Hotspur's first team

Tottenham's Nabil Bentaleb

The Algerian looks set to leave White Hart Lane this summer.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

Tottenham Hotspur head coach Mauricio Pochettino has explained why Nabil Bentaleb has been banished to the Under-21s, via ESPN.

Bentaleb has fallen out of the Argentine's plans this past year, having featured regularly throughout his first 12 months in the White Hart Lane dugout.

And the midfielder, who also had his number 6 shirt removed in favour of a return to his previous number 42 last week, looks destined to leave the club, who are said to be seeking £12 million for his services (Daily Mail).

Tottenham's Nabil Bentaleb

Pochettino, though, has insisted Bentaleb is only training away from the Tottenham first team because the 21-year-old has formally requested to leave.

"He is training with the Under-21s. He is not with the first team because he wanted to leave," he said, as quoted by ESPN. "I think I explained very well. If he wanted to leave, he can come and see me, I say: 'OK you can leave.'

"He is waiting to try to find a place away from Tottenham. But there is nothing to do. We share the changing room and the restaurants all together. It's not a problem.

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

"Only that the rule is very clear: If you are not part of my plans, why are you training with us? He understands very well, like any other player. It is not a big issue, not a problem. Sometimes it looks like a big, big issue, but it is very normal in football."

Bentaleb, who has been linked with loan moves to Lazio and Benfica (Daily Mail), is said to have annoyed Pochettino with his decision to discuss his frustration about delays in contract talks during a 2015 interview with the Daily Telegraph.

Despite this, the Algerian signed a new five-year deal the following month, though he went on to make only 11 senior appearances throughout 2015-16.

Tottenham's Victor Wanyama in action with Everton's Ross BarkleyThe signing of Victor Wanyama (left) was the final nail in Bentaleb's coffin

 

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