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Thursday 2 July, 2020

Victor Wanyama: Mauricio Pochettino 'teaches you about life'

Wanyama has spoken about the influence of Pochettino on his career – and it extends beyond football.

Image: Steven Paston

VICTOR WANYAMA HAS hailed manager Mauricio Pochettino for playing a huge role to his new life at Tottenham.

Wanyama joined the North London club from Southampton in July 2016; three seasons after Pochettino had signed ahead of the 2014-15 season. Wanyama’s performances have made him an instant favourite in his first season at Spurs.

The Kenyan captain has formed a formidable partnership alongside Mousa Dembele in the midfield engine room, their protection not only helping the team maintain the best defensive record in the Premier League, but constantly winning back possession to set up attacks.

“Mauricio has improved my game in all aspects, everything,” added Wanyama.

“It’s not just football; in life as well I’ve learned a lot of things. He’s been able to teach me a lot inside and outside football, how to live with people, how to be humble,” he told the club’s official website.

“I’ve learned a lot of things through him and I don’t just see him as a manager but as a father figure. I’d played against Spurs a few times and they were a hard team to beat. The manager started improving the team and I felt this was a Club going somewhere.

“I looked at where the Club was heading and with the manager; I knew I couldn’t go wrong. I know he builds for the future and wants to fight for everything. I couldn’t resist that.”

Wanyama initially caught the eye at Belgian side Beerschot AC. He moved to Celtic in 2011, helped them to two Scottish titles and scored in a famous win in the Champions League against Barcelona in November, 2012, before joining Mauricio at Southampton in July, 2013.

“I’d never had a manager, who wants you to improve day by day like him. He works on your weakness, he’s a good role model and he doesn’t just look at football, but life in general.

“He teaches you about life, how to live with people and that was amazing to me. We worked hard and after a while, you could see the difference because in the games I felt like the games were easier and we could run for 100 minutes because we were fitter. It worked well for us.”

– © AFP 2017

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