Paulinho discusses Spurs failure; hails ‘buenísimo’ Levy

Date published: Friday 22nd December 2017 8:53

Paulinho has discussed his “difficult time” in north London at Tottenham.

Paulinho joined Tottenham in 2013, but had more managers than he did years at the club.

Andre Villas-Boas signed the midfielder and Tim Sherwood inherited him, before Mauricio Pochettino misused and sold him, according to Paulinho himself.

The Brazilian is now impressing at Barcelona after a brief spell in China, and has looked back on his time in the Premier League.

“I wouldn’t say it was a relief to leave Spurs but it was clear I had to,” he told The Guardian. “It was a difficult time.

“[André] Villas-Boas bought me in July 2013 and in December Villas-Boas goes. He’d wanted me, we’d spoken a lot, and then six months later Tim Sherwood was in charge. There was no problem with him – he was very young, a good coach – but the team wasn’t doing well and he came under pressure to change things. He did things a little differently but I still played the last eight or nine games that season.

“Then came the change from Sherwood to Mauricio Pochettino.

“My first game is in my position but after that I played in every position apart from my own. If we play in a three, I’m here. If we play in a two, I’m here.

“He had a different system, and if you’re not in your position in a football as competitive as England it’s difficult.

“I was playing on the left wing: the míster put me there and I had to play there, because I wanted to play. I had no problem with Pochettino. I told him: ‘This position is not mine but if you want I can play there.’ But in the long term you’re not going to be at your best and over the last six months I wasn’t playing regularly.

“I thought the moment had come to leave. Where? I didn’t know. But I wanted to leave. The coach wasn’t trusting in me so there’s no reason to stay. It was April, May 2015, a month left. I’d spoken to the president [chairman Daniel Levy] and asked him if he could help. He was a buenísimo person and he said: ‘Let’s wait and see if you have anything.’”

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