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Mauricio Pochettino Says Moving EPL Transfer Deadline Was 'Massive Mistake'

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistAugust 19, 2019

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 17: Mauricio Pochettino the head coach / manager of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur at Etihad Stadium on August 17, 2019 in Manchester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images)
Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has rued the decision to close the Premier League transfer window early and called on the division to return to the previous way of operating. 

In 2017, Spurs were one of 14 clubs who voted for the summer transfer window to be closed prior to the start of the season. Manchester City, Manchester United, Crystal Palace, Watford and Swansea City voted against, while one club—thought to be Burnleyabstained.

Per Sky Sports' Zinny Boswell, Pochettino said his views did not align with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy on the matter.

"I wasn't in agreement, but at that moment they believed that was best for the clubs," he said. "But I think he and a lot of people now realise it was a massive mistake. I hope that we fix the problem for the next season."

The coach expressed his belief that the change is particularly harmful to teams competing in the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League, and added:

"Champions League teams can create a problem for a team like us, and it's so clear that I cannot be happy as a coach that in the last three weeks clubs from Europe can unsettle your team.

"For me it's not common sense, and we need to go back quick, hope they have a good conversation at the Premier League and go back quickly [to how it was]."

Pochettino made his views clear soon after the Premier League window closed on August 8:

Goal @goal

Pochettino isn't happy with the Premier League transfer window closing date 👎 https://t.co/nsOu6TK20V

Serie A clubs can still buy players until Friday, on the eve of their season beginning, while the rest of Europe have until September 2 to recruit new signings.

The Premier League's early closure means English sides can enter the season without worrying about their players joining a domestic rival, and sports writer Andy West would like La Liga to adopt the same policy:

Andy West @andywest01

Gotta say I think closing the transfer window before the season starts is a good move by the Premier League. Much better for clubs and coaches to plan and prepare when they don't risk losing players after the season has already started. La Liga should follow suit.

However, with European clubs still able to buy, Premier League players can move abroad without being replaced until January.

English clubs aren't obliged to sell if a continental club make an approach, but players could be unsettled by an offer coming in, which can put their side in a difficult situation.

The old system wasn't without its flaws—starting a season without your final squad in place isn't ideal—but unless the rest of Europe agree to bring their deadline forward to match, the Premier League will be left at a disadvantage.