Mauricio Pochettino explains the most important thing he learned from Maradona

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

The Tottenham Hotspur boss has been discussing his time with the Argentina talisman, and made some observations that may resonate with how he encourages Spurs to play football.

Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has been discussing the early stages of his international career as a player with the Spurs website, where he roomed with football icon Maradona.

For the young defender, it was unsurprisingly a significant moment.

“It was a dream to play with him," Pochettino said of Maradona on the Tottenham website. "He was my room-mate! It was unbelievable. On the first day, I went to go to sleep in the room, I could not sleep! It was like a dream or you are in a movie.”

The 44-year-old, now in his third season with Spurs, went on to outline what he learned from the number 10, someone many feel rivals Pele as the greatest ever footballer.

“I learned things you cannot buy, things you cannot teach," he added.

Tottenham manager Mauricio PochettinoTottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino

“For me, the most important thing I learned from him was that to be a great footballer, you need to love the game, to love training, to love sharing with your team-mates, to love touching the football. That was important.

“Maradona is Maradona because he had an unbelievable talent but one thing is important, he respects the game, he loves the game, he always loved his team-mates and respected his team-mates."

Stressing the love of football and solidarity within the team are things Pochettino has discussed during his time in the hot seat at Spurs

Tottenham's Erik Lamela in actionTottenham's Erik Lamela in action

Tottenham are of course a club that his ties to several famous Argentinian stars, not least with the presence of Pochettino as a hungry, young manager ushering in a new era at White Hart Lane, utilising the talent of players like current Argentina international Erik Lamela.

Ossie Ardilles and Ricky Villa are heroes in both Argentina and North London, having helped their country win the first of two World Cups in 1978. It was Ardilles' connection to the club that saw the remarkable occasion where Maradona himself pulled on a Spurs shirt in his former international teammate's testimonial against Inter Milan in 1986.

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