Mauricio Pochettino has discussed Christian Eriksen’s ‘commitment’ to Tottenham and insists the midfielder’s level of performance remains the same despite uncertainty surrounding his future at the club.
The Danish international is entering the final months of his contract with Spurs and is widely expected to leave, either in the January transfer window or on a free transfer at the season’s end.
The 27-year-old has made no secret of his desire for a new challenge and has struggled to produce his best performances so far this season, having scored just one goal and provided one assist in 12 appearances as speculation continues to surround his long-term future.
Despite criticism of Eriksen’s recent performances, Pochettino insists he is happy with the playmaker and says there has been no change in the player’s commitment to the club.
“I don’t think the performance of Christian (Eriksen) is any different than when we signed him five-and-a-half years ago,” Pochettino said at his pre-match press conference on Tuesday.
“His commitment is the same – sometimes we maybe look too much at whether a player has a one-year contract or a four-year contract.
“In the end it is about commitment – maybe players in the last year of their contract show more commitment than a player with four more years on their contract.
“But when you see Christian and you compare him to different seasons, he is the same player.”
Tottenham travel to face Red Star Belgrade tonight looking to take a huge step towards the Champions League knock-out stages.
Pochettino’s side are currently second in Group B, just a point ahead of their Serbian opponents ahead of a huge meeting between the sides.
Elsewhere in the group, German champions Bayern Munich will be looking to continue their perfect start to the campaign, and can secure qualification for the last-16 with victory over winless Olympiakos at the Allianz Arena.