Mauricio Pochettino left unimpressed as Argentina call up Giovani Lo Celso for friendlies

Press Association Sport 18:54 01/11/2019
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Tottenham playmaker Giovani Lo Celso.

Mauricio Pochettino is not happy with Giovani Lo Celso’s inclusion in Argentina’s latest squad.

Lo Celso, a deadline-day signing from Real Betis, picked up a hip injury while on international duty in September and has only made two substitute appearances for Spurs since, which have totalled just 13 minutes of action.

That has not stopped Argentina boss Lionel Scaloni calling him into his squad for friendlies against Brazil and Uruguay, set to be played in Saudi Arabia and Israel later this month.

Pochettino would rather the 23-year-old stay at the club’s training base, but as a proud winner of 20 Argentina caps he knows what it means to players when they get the call.

“In general, always the manager you want your players at home,” he said.

“For him it’s going to be tough, because when he’s nearly fit again to start to play he needs to go away.

“Changing the dynamics of training sessions, some wrong situations can happen.

“Being honest, I am not happy. But I accept it as I always defend the national team and back the decision of the national team as I was a player and know what it feels to play.

“I can do nothing, only to show and describe my feelings.”

Lo Celso could get more minutes under his belt when Spurs visit Everton on Saturday, looking to move out of the bottom half of the Premier League.

Spurs will check on Jan Vertonghen’s hamstring injury, but Erik Lamela (thigh), Hugo Lloris (elbow) and Danny Rose (suspended) are out.

Rose’s absence could leave a spot in the squad for Ryan Sessegnon for the first time since his own deadline-day move from Fulham.

Pochettino, though, has warned that the 19-year-old is not ready to be trusted for an entire match in the Premier League.

“We’re assessing all the players this weekend,” he said. “We have a session tomorrow and then travel to Liverpool and we’ll see if he can be involved.

“I cannot say that he’s complete in the way that we can say we trust him to play 90 minutes.

“We have a big squad, it’s difficult to give the possibility, but he’s still young.

“He needs to work hard. He had a long period of injury, but for sure he is going to get an opportunity to play in the future.

“He came from Fulham with a massive injury, we are working hard to try to give the level.

“Always when you have a squad like we have, a big squad, you need to wait for the opportunity and be ready.”

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