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Mauricio Pochettino

Mauricio Pochettino fears Tottenham are helpless when it comes to preventing their long-term transfer targets joining richer clubs. The Argentine was speaking a week after Spurs were forced to concede defeat to Chelsea in the battle for Ross Barkley. And reportedly, Bordeaux attacker Malcom is edging closer to an Arsenal switch.

With just six months remaining on his contract, Barkley moved to Stamford Bridge for a cut-price £15million – after previously indicating he would be up for a move to North London. With Spurs looking to tie both Dele Alli and Harry Kane to long-term deals to remain at the club, Pochettino fears that the rise of the club’s rivals will become more and more of an issue in the game.

“It’s difficult to keep secrets. Sometimes the media knows before me the player who we are going to sign. That makes our job difficult. How do you keep it secret? Impossible,” Pochettino was quoted by Daily Mail.

“Maybe someone near the player is going to talk. Maybe you make an offer and it’s used to talk with another club. It is frustrating. We can’t stop it.”

Tottenham’s interest in Malcom was largely off the radar until reports emerged earlier this month that the club had made an enquiry. Since then, Arsenal and Manchester United have both made moves for the gifted winger. But according to Pochettino, he had no update on a potential move for the 20-year-old Brazilian.

“It’s another rumour,” the Argentine told Sky Sports. “There are a lot of rumours in the media.

“Tottenham are a club who in three-and-a-half years I saw in the media, minimum 100 names and out of them we signed only a few.”

However, the former Espanyol manager is not bothered by either the club’s January inactivity or other rivals’ spending, after Liverpool spent big to bring defender Virgil van Dijk from Southampton.

He said: “Until now, before the press conference, there is nothing close. “I’m not concerned, I’m not worried. I think we are working and are awake about the market.

“If something is available in terms that we can take, of course, we are going to do it but, if not, it’s difficult.

“Personally, I never look next to me at what the other teams are doing. It’s about how I believe and try to make things happen.”

Though there are some areas in our squad that need to be strengthened, I don’t think we’ll spend over the top to bring in a player to the club this month. However, it wouldn’t hurt to raise our hopes, would it?

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