Lineker: Pochettino is already punching well above his weight

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 08: Mauricio Pochettino, Manager of Tottenham Hotspur looks on prior to the Carabao Cup Semi-Final First Leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on January 8, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Tottenham legend Gary Lineker believes Mauricio Pochettino has no need whatsoever to prove himself as a top-class coach.

The Argentine has impressed greatly at Spurs in the past four years by converting them into regular top-four finishers in the Premier League, despite their limited resources.

In light of this, Pochettino has been frequently linked with a switch to Real Madrid in La Liga along with Manchester United.

Despite his impressive progress, however, critics have been quick to point out that Pochettino has failed to do the one thing that really counts in football – winning trophies.

But former striker Lineker, who scored 80 goals in 138 games for Spurs and won the FA Cup with the club in 1991, insists Pochettino has nothing to prove to anyone.

“He doesn’t need to win anything to be proclaimed as a terrific coach,” Lineker told talkSPORT.

“He’s punching well above his weight in terms of how he’s performed at that football club, that’s why he’s been linked with Manchester United.

“If he was the manager of Manchester City or Liverpool then you’d go ‘yeah, he needs to be winning things on a fairly regular basis.’

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“Tottenham have got a good squad, but they haven’t got the strength in depth that City or Liverpool have.”

He continued: “(Pep) Guardiola had to wait until his second season to win his first trophy at City.

“On that basis does [Jurgen] Klopp need to win something this season? Yeah, probably.

“But at the same time [Liverpool] play great football, they’re ultra-competitive and serious challengers in two of the biggest competitions in world football, so you have to weigh all that up.

“Pochettino is not managing a huge club with massive budgets and expectations.

“He’s not bought a player for the last two windows, now. Some people have short memories.”

The last time Spurs won any silverware themselves came in the 2008 EFL Cup, where they defeated Chelsea 2-1 in the final.

LONDON – FEBRUARY 24: Robbie Keane of Tottenham Hotspur leads the celebrations following victory during the Carling Cup Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium on February 24, 2008 in London, England. Tottenham Hotspur won 2-1 after extra time. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)