Mauricio Pochettino has expressed the sadness and deep shock he felt after being handed a two-match touchline ban by the Football Association, calling the punishment “exaggerated”.
The Tottenham manager last week issued a public apology and accepted the FA charges for his confrontation with referee Mike Dean in the defeat at Burnley on Feb 23. However, on Thursday Pochettino deemed the subsequent punishment, which includes a £10,000 fine alongside the ban, disproportionate to the offence.
Pochettino said receiving the news ahead of Tottenham’s Champions League win over Dortmund, marking their first quarter-final qualification in eight years, knocked his pre-match preparations.
“I was in shock. It was before the [Dortmund] game, and you can appreciate that I was so sad because I didn’t change, I was in a tracksuit on the touchline, I didn’t put [on] the suit and tie because I was so sad when I received the news.
“It’s like my mind was gone because you feel so bad. Because when you deserve to be banned, of course. But this, I think it’s not very proportionate, it’s exaggerated.
“We are waiting since Wednesday for a letter from the FA. I am so curious to see why they decided to do what they do. Two-game ban for me is completely unfair. It’s unbelievable.”