MAURICIO Pochettino stands accused of showing the FA Cup a lack of respect – by some of his own supporters!
Much-changed Saints turned in a below-par performance to lose 1-0 at Sunderland in a fifth round tie at the weekend.
Pochettino left out regulars such as Artur Boruc, Jose Fonte, Jack Cork, Morgan Schneiderlin and top scorer Jay Rodriguez.
Sections of the Saints fanbase were furious with Pochettino’s actions, given the club are totally free of any relegation worries.
The Daily Echo’s website was inundated with postings from fans upset at the meek way Saints exited the competition when a win would have left them 90 minutes from a Wembley semi final.
Pochettino himself did not face the media after the 1-0 defeat, instead leaving assistant Jesus Perez to answer questions.
Writing on the Echo’s website, Abbey Saint said: “This was NOT Saints strongest side, and to say he (Perez) was just a ‘little sad’ to be knocked out of THE FA CUP at this late stage when we have nothing else to play for this season (Poch has already said the Europa League is not useful) disrespects the FA Cup, the travelling fans and the Saints history.”
Right back in the bar said: “Whatever the management believe, this was a massive game for us fans and to select a weakened team without form players in the starting lineup was a disgrace - unfathomable when there was a 1/4 final at stake. What a waste.”
St Christopher added: “Appalling display and a totally unneccesary result that all began with the team selection that effectively said to everyone (including the players) we were either that not interested or had become so big-headed that we didn't need our best team.
“Either way it wasn't MoPo’s finest hour and does raise legitimate questions over certain aspects of his managerial credentials.”