Mauricio Pochettino has been charged by the Football Association with a tw0-game ban for his post-match conduct towards referee Mike Dean following Tottenham’s 2-1 defeat to Burnley.
Pochettino, who was visibly aggrieved with Dean at the final whistle, will be in the stands for Spurs’ games against Southampton and Liverpool alongside facing a £10,000 fine.
Spurs’ defeat at Turf Moor left their title prospects hanging by a thread, with the proceedings defeat and draw against Chelsea and Arsenal respectively all but ending their hopes of a maiden Premier League title and a first trophy in the Pochettino era.
Tottenham insiders are said to be furious with the decision from the FA, believing no precedent has been adhered to following Jurgen Klopp having been fined twice this season but not banned, once for running onto the pitch following Liverpool’s last-minute winner against Everton and most recently after confronting Kevin Friend and receiving a £45,000 fine after Liverpool’s 1-1 draw with West Ham.
Pochettino’s ban represents a significant blow to Spurs, whose title aspirations have morphed into a frantic chase for Champions League qualification, with Manchester United now sitting just three points behind the North London outfit who are winless in three Premier League games.
The Lilywhites are likely to appeal, and with strong foundations to do so, yet with the stadium fiasco remaining and a plethora of injuries in an already-stretched Tottenham squad, this is simply another complication that could’ve, and perhaps should’ve, been easily avoided.
Following his charge for two breaches of rule E3, which concerns the general behaviour of players and staff and carries the threat of suspension, Pochettino commented:
“I made a mistake. My behaviour was public and now I want to apologise in a public way. I need to apologise to him and all of the officials.”
I’m very disappointed, but I don’t care. If we’re not going to receive help from our football people in our country, only I can laugh. But you will see tomorrow why I am not happy.”
Mauricio Pochettino, pre-Borrusia Dortmund press conference, 04/03/2019
Spurs will now await the outcome of their appeal, but with a quarter-final spot in the Champions League secured after beating Borrusia Dortmund 4-0 over two legs, with Harry Kane’s clinical strike on Tuesday night in Germany sealing their progression to the last eight.