Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino treated the club to a steak dinner on Wednesday night to help fill it with the togetherness he believes is required to win titles this season.
Pochettino paid for a party of around 50, which included players, staff and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, to eat at the Beast restaurant on London’s Oxford Street, where the menu boasts steaks from Finland, Spain and Nebraska.
The 45-year-old plumped for the Spanish cut, which came in at £13 per 100g, as well as wine from his native Argentina. The most expensive dish, a ‘Whole Norwegian King Crab’ would have set him back £120 per kilogram.
With a highly charged clash against West Ham coming up on Saturday, Pochettino said his team outing was aimed at integrating new signings and strengthening his side’s steel for the battles ahead.
“You need time to create a good dynamic, not only tactics but outside too,” Pochettino said.
“(On Wednesday) we had a dinner in a restaurant in London with all the staff and players that I invite of course. I paid the bill at the end! That is true, the one time that I was invited!
“That is important because you prefer to say, ‘Shall we do tactics here in the morning or (would) you prefer to go last night and put all the staff, the players and the chairman too in a restaurant?’ That is tactics too.
“It is so important, just as it is important to work on the pitch, to know better in between them, to speak in a different way. That creates links between them, emotion.
“When you must fight in a competition, there’s willingness more to help your team-mates and care more for your team-mates and care more for the gaffer that pays the bill!”
Of Tottenham’s summer signings, Davinson Sanchez and Serge Aurier have both settled quickly into the team’s back-line but 19-year-old Juan Foyth and 32-year-old Fernando Llorente may need more time.
Foyth, signed from Argentina’s Estudiantes, is seen as one for the future, while Llorente is still finding sharpness after joining Spurs on the last day of the transfer window and missing pre-season with an arm injury.
When fit, the Spaniard should offer Pochettino a useful back-up to Harry Kane.
“It is about having different alternatives,” the Argentinian said.
“He provides very good energy to the team – he won the World Cup, he’s played for some of the biggest clubs in the world. He’s so humble and provides very, very good energy. Now, we only need time.
“It’s only a few weeks that they are involved in the dynamic of the team, the club. There are different examples in the world – like (Zinedine) Zidane at Real Madrid.
“He came from Juventus and only after six months he started to perform in the way that he can play and he was really criticised. Only time, we need time.”
Llorente is likely to start on the bench against West Ham and Aurier is jostling for a starting spot at right back with Kieran Trippier.
Erik Lamela is still recovering from a problem with his hips, while Danny Rose and Victor Wanyama (both knee) remain unavailable.