Mauricio Pochettino had conceded that he may have “made a mistake” when comparing Tottenham youngster Marcus Edwards to Lionel Messi.
Edwards is considered one of the most exciting youngsters in Tottenham’s development system, and has a reputation that was only boosted when Pochettino admitted he saw similarities between the forward and a young Messi last September.
“The qualities – it’s only looks, his body and the way that he plays – remind me a little bit of the beginning of Messi,” Pochettino said at the time.
Edwards has failed to kick on however, and has yet to make his Premier League debut.
He was named one of the ten best teenagers in the Premier League in January, but will end the year yet to make his first-team breakthrough.
“It’s about performance,” Pochettino said. “Maybe I made a mistake because I believed it was positive and he was going to take it in a positive way,” he added about the Messi comment.
“When you’re young, sometimes you need more time. Sometimes it looks like it’s time to have the possibility to play, or sometimes you stop your evolution.
“We still trust in him, that he can be important. Of course it’s up to him after that to show us and everyone here at Tottenham that he deserves to be in the first team and deserves to have the possibility.
“I’m not going to talk about that,” he added of Edwards’ attitude. “It’s about performance.
“Of course he needs to work hard like different players that we have in the academy, and wait for the opportunity. It’s never easy, the last step, to join the first team from the academy.”