Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has revealed that "it's not his job" to deal with the contract negotiations between the club and star defender Toby Alderweireld, amid reports that Spurs will not meet the Belgian's wage demands.
Speaking ahead of the weekend's clash with Crystal Palace, via the BBC, Pochettino admitted that the issues with the ongoing negotiations had not been keeping the 29-year-old out of the team recently, but went on to explain that he had picked up a new injury problem. Alderweireld has spent a large chunk of the season on the sidelines, but had only recently returned.
While his injury isn't too serious - he described it as "a small incident in the same leg" - it was the contract issues that took precedence as Pochettino spoke to the media.
But the Argentinian said: "It is not my job and I cannot say anything about that. I am not involved in negotiations. I never talk about rumours, what the media say or what happens around the club."
Manchester United and Chelsea have been tipped as the front-runners, along with Real Madrid, to potentially sign the player when the season ends, amid his contract uncertainty. His current deal expires in 2019 and it's believed that Alderweireld wants £150,000-a-week to renew, but Spurs are more willing to sell the player to a rival than break their wage structure as it stands.
Regarding the injury, Pochettino went on to add: "Only Toby yesterday didn't finish the training session. He suffered a small incident in the same leg. We will assess him today and tomorrow and see if he can train and be available for the weekend. We hope it's not a big issue. Until tomorrow we cannot decide nothing.
"It was just, I think, for caution that he didn't finish the training session. It's the same leg but a different area. I want all the players fit and I hope to help Toby to be available for the team."