Mauricio Pochettino has dismissed proposals that rumors linking him to the vacant job at Manchester United affected his team in Paris Saint-Germain when they fell to a 2-1 loss to Manchester City on Wednesday.
Kylian Mbappe gave the French team the lead shortly after half-time, only for goals from Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus that fired City to victory, securing the top spot in their group as a result.
Despite PSG taking the lead, PSG were second-best overall, but Pochettino was convinced that news linking him to an exit was not behind the incoherent performance.
“The players know the situation very well – we live in a business where there are rumors, sometimes negative, sometimes positive,” he said (via Sky Sports News). “That’s what we’re saying about the rumors.”
United are still open to the idea of hiring Pochettino now, after accepting that the Argentine is their preferred target to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, but PSG are reluctant to lose their boss in the middle of the season.
90min revealed earlier this week that PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi is far from happy with Pochettino’s willingness to join United immediately, and he is prepared to dig into the heel in an attempt to keep the manager until the end of the season.
Publicly, United have always insisted that they are not looking to sign Pochettino immediately but are instead looking at interim alternatives, with Ralf Rangnick, Ernesto Valverde, Rudi Garcia, Lucien Favre and Paulo Fonseca all identified as possible targets.
Should they fail to land Pochettino now, United can resume their search during the summer, but in the meantime the Argentine insists that he is happy to lead PSG.
“We are disappointed but we have to look ahead,” he said after the City loss.
“We are improving and I am happy in the process. Things are better than a month ago and much better than two months ago. A little at a time the team is improving.”