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'It is a very special situation' - Pochettino not giving up hope of Eriksen extension after decisive goal

The star midfielder’s goal against Brighton puts Spurs in control of the top-four race in the Premier League.

Eriksen applauding the fans after Spurs' victory over Brighton.
Eriksen applauding the fans after Spurs' victory over Brighton.
Image: John Walton

TOTTENHAM MANAGER MAURICIO Pochettino has not given up hope of Christian Eriksen extending his contract despite the midfielder having only 14 months left on his deal.

Eriksen joined Spurs from Ajax in 2013 and has been a regular ever since, becoming one of the Premier League’s best playmakers.

He was decisive on Tuesday, scoring a fine late winner as Spurs took charge in the top-four battle with a 1-0 victory over Brighton and Hove Albion.

Spurs and Eriksen have long been in negotiations but do not appear to be getting any closer to an agreement, with some suggesting they could look to offload him at the end of the season to prevent losing him on a free transfer next year.

When asked if he had any updates on the talks, Pochettino told reporters: “I think I was clear a few months ago.

It is a very special situation. Christian is a special person. I think we are all special, different and we need to understand that.

“The timing for him or for the club to be agreeing something are maybe different to another player. I hope and I wish Christian can be with us in the future, but I think Christian and us, we are so open to talking and we will see what happens.

“I think it is so close to the end of the season, [there is] a lot of time to talk after and I think the most important thing now, not only for him, is for all the players to be focused and try to achieve the things we want.

“We have a lot of big things ahead and we need to be focused only to try and recover, train and compete.”

Eriksen has impressed lately and his winner against Brighton capped a strong all-round performance, with Pochettino paying tribute to his technical ability.

“He has an amazing quality,” Pochettino added. “He can shoot from outside of the box and have unbelievable shots with his left and right foot.

Of course, it’s about mentality too, but in the end if you don’t have the quality then you can shoot 10 times without the goalkeeper and for sure you’re not going to score, but with Christian he can shoot and score.”

Brighton were agonisingly close to what could have been a pivotal point in their fight against relegation and Chris Hughton accepted it was painful to slip to such a late loss.

“That’s very much the feeling,” Hughton told reporters when asked if it was a heartbreaking defeat. “We had a little bit of fortune go our away, they hit the post, we defended well.

“The longer it went I thought we would hold out if we had managed the game better at the end. I thought the centre-halves were both excellent.

“It’s a pressurised situation but we have put ourselves in it and we have to deal with it. We have an opportunity now at home against Newcastle [United on Saturday].”

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