Football

Souness: Spurs Shouldn't Be In The Champions League Final

Souness: Spurs Shouldn't Be In The Champions League Final

Graeme Souness believes that Spurs are fortunate to be in this weekend's Champions League final against Liverpool.

"Spurs shouldn't be there," Souness said at the launch of Virgin Media's Finals Week celebrating their coverage of the Champions League and Europa League deciders.

"You say to anyone at the start of the season, 'This team is going to lose 19 games in all competitions and yet they'll find themselves in the Champions League final' you'd have said they're talking nonsense. They've somehow got themselves there, they are fortunate to be there."

The Liverpool legend believes just two Spurs players would get into a composite Liverpool and Spurs XI.

I'm looking at it mostly through the eyes of a Liverpool supporter. I'd pose the question: If you were picking a team from the 22 players that are going to start the game, how many Spurs players would be in that XI?

I'm thinking, Eriksen, into midfield, and Harry Kane. You've got nine Liverpool players.

The minute you try to attach logic to a game of football, you will come unstuck. Eight, nine times out of ten, the team with the best players wins the football match. Liverpool have the best players.

On the other side of that coin, there's a small part of me thinking, 'Spurs' name is already on that trophy'. The way they've got to the final, they have been lucky.

You can't say Liverpool have been lucky. They came back from 3-0 down against Barcelona, you can't say that was a lucky performance. They steamrolled Barca that night, stopped Messi, they steamrolled them.

I'm hoping it will be a Liverpool win but there is an element of doubt in my mind because of the luck Spurs have enjoyed getting to the final.

In recent weeks, Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino has suggested that win or lose, he may leave the club after Saturday's game.

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"It's a really hard one to call," said Souness regarding the possibility of Pochettino leaving.

"You don't know who's been phoning him up and making offers. It's exciting times at Spurs, they're in the final of a Champions League, moving into a new stadium, they've qualified for the Champions League next year. There's only two places, maybe even only one place he'd want to go. That would be Real Madrid.

"I've always said that if you're Northern European, for the last 20 years, if you had a choice it would be Man Utd. If you're Latin and the big clubs in Spain come calling, it's very hard to say no. I think the same would apply to Pochettino.

"It will have been explained to him more than once where they are financially. They've moved into this marvellous stadium and that's way over budget. I don't suppose he'll have bundles to spend.

"Who knows. The Real Madrid job is gone at this time and the Man Utd job is gone at this time. Where else would you go? Tottenham are a fabulous club with exciting times ahead. Fair play to him because he has toed the party line on more than one occasion, saying the right things at the right time. He's no different to any manager, past or current, because you always want more players, you always want to fresh up the squad. He's done remarkably well to get where he's got with this team and this group of players."

Virgin Media pundit Graeme Souness pictured at Virgin Media Television’s launch to celebrate Finals Week with live coverage of the UEFA Europa League Final & the UEFA Champions League Final. Virgin Media Television is the home of European Football this week with live coverage of the UEFA Europa League Final on Wednesday 29th May from 6.30pm on both Virgin Media Two & Virgin Media Sport and the UEFA Champions League Final on Saturday 1st June from 6pm on Virgin Media One & Virgin Media Sport.

Picture credit: Sportsfile and Shutterstock.com

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PJ Browne
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