Manchester City defender Kyle Walker has explained that he was “hurt” by former manager Mauricio Pochettino after the Argentine head coach published conversations the two had during their time together in north London in his book.
Although the 28-year-old readily admits that he still has a lot of admiration for Pochettino, the England international hasn’t been impressed that private talks he had with his old manager have come out, especially as they are only a one-sided version of events.
Walker eventually moved to the Etihad for £47m last year, but contrary to what was reported at the time, the defender claims that he didn’t push to leave the club. Instead, the former Spurs man explains how he was told that he was no longer needed in north London.
“He told me I wasn’t in his plans,” Walker told the Daily Mail. “I was hurt a lot by that. He said his door was always open and I thought it was a private meeting we had. So I kept quiet but then he went and wrote about it…or his version of it.
“If he was going to do that he might as well have called a press conference and told everyone. He told one side of the story, but it’s a side of a story I don’t agree with.
“He said he had a witness in there, but he didn’t tell the correct story, no way. Up until now, I have never said my part. I have stayed quiet and showed a level of respect for Tottenham and I always will.
“I have had a few people calling me a snake and stuff [for leaving Tottenham],” he added. “It hurts because I gave everything to that club. And everything I am now I owe to that club. So yes, it hurts when I go back there now, but I guess it’s just a part of football.”
Walker will have the chance to return to his former club for the first time this season next month, but all of Manchester City’s focus will be on turning around their form following a surprise defeat to Lyon in the Champions League.
Goals from Maxwel Cornet and Nabil Fekir were decisive for the French side on Tuesday, and Pep Guardiola will demand an emphatic turnaround when the reigning Premier League champions take on Cardiff City on Saturday.