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Mauricio Pochettino: 'Harry Winks like Xavi, Andres Iniesta'

Pochettino: 'Winks like Xavi, Iniesta'
© Reuters
Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino claims that midfielder Harry Winks could be England's 'Xavi or Andres Iniesta'.

Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has claimed that Harry Winks could be England's 'Xavi or Andres Iniesta'.

Winks impressed for Tottenham in the early stages of the 2017-18 campaign, and also put in a man-of-the-match performance on his England debut against Lithuania in October.

The midfielder picked up an ankle injury in November, however, and eventually underwent surgery in May.

Winks has returned to the fold this season, appearing in Tottenham's last three Premier League matches.

Pochettino has said that the 22-year-old's "characteristics are perfect", and has insisted that he could become "one of the best midfielders in England" if he continues to develop.

"His characteristics are perfect. When we talk about midfielders like [Spain greats] Xavi and Iniesta, he's like this type of player. He has this capacity but he needs to take my words in a very positive way - he needs a lot of work," he told reporters.

"I don't want to praise him too much because if so his head [grows big]! His perception will be 'wow!' And the reality is he still needs to prove [himself].

"He has the possibility and the potential, of course, but now it is up to him and we go again: mentality. In his mind he is capable to learn about suffering: there never is enough training, always try to be better. Football must be his focus, not the business around football.

"Maybe [if he learns this] he will play at a very good level and be one of the best midfielders in England. If he wants to take my advice, take it. If people don't want to take it, we cannot help. But of course his potential is to be a very, very good player for England and Tottenham. First for Tottenham and then, if England believe that he can help them, for England, too."

Winks has scored once in 64 first-team appearances for Tottenham.

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Hugo Lloris in action for Tottenham Hotspur on August 13, 2018
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TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool66001421218
2Manchester CityMan City65101931616
3Chelsea55001441015
4Watford6411116513
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs6402127512
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14Southampton612369-35
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16Burnley6114710-34
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20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield6024314-112

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