Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino questions safety of Rochdale pitch

"He can reach a higher level than before because he's more experienced".

Cape Town - Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has voiced his concerns about Rochdale's Spotland Stadium pitch ahead of their FA Cup fifth round tie.

Spurs face the League One side on February 18 in the fifth round after they eased past Newport at Wembley on Wednesday.

The pitch has seen one home game played in the last month - the fourth-round replay 1-0 win over Millwall on Tuesday - and there is little prospect of it improving much in the next 10 days.

After the game both managers commented on the awful quality of the playing surface.

Following a hard start at their temporary residence, Mauricio Pochettino says Wembley finally feels like home for Tottenham as they prepare to host Arsenal on Saturday.

"I think you are going to struggle no? I don't know why or what happened on the pitch but through the pictures, I think it is not a pitch in a condition to play football".

MAURICIO POCHETTINO fears a "massive risk" of injury to players on Rochdale's controversial pitch.

"I think it is a big risk to play on a pitch like this, if the pictures give us an accurate state. I think his mentality is fantastic", the Spurs manager added. I think Rochdale can not play football too there, and it's a massive risk for their players too. It is a massive risk for their players too.

"I think that the team is so strong, the physical condition is so strong, mental and of course in the way that we play is so clear the philosophy and everything always helps the team and the players to perform in the way that we want".

Speaking shortly after his side's 2-0 victory over Michael Flynn's side, Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino insisted that Llorente's struggle to find the back of the net does not worry him and that the former Spain worldwide must continue to fight for his place in the starting XI just like everyone else.

Ground staff slept in the dressing-room at the stadium in order to work intensively on the pitch before the Millwall tie, with the club also hiring a heated dome to protect the surface from the weather.

  • Stacy Allen