Mauricio Pochettino has said he has faith in Christian Eriksen as the playmaker continues to stall on signing a new long-term contract with Tottenham.

Eriksen has just eighteen months remaining on his current deal and has recently been heavily linked with Real Madrid.

Why is Eriksen stalling on a new Spurs deal? Five key things to know…

  1. Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Son Heung-min have all signed new long-term contracts with Spurs in recent months.
  2. Eriksen is still on the contract he signed in September 2016, which expires at the end of next season.
  3. The Independent claims Real Madrid have made ‘initial steps’ to sign the Dane this summer.
  4. Eriksen currently earns £75,000 a week, according to reports, far less than top earner Kane (£200,000 a week).
  5. The 26-year-old has scored more Premier League goals (45) than Gareth Bale (42).

Eriksen scored within 11 seconds of kick-off in Tottenham’s Premier League clash with Manchester United last season and is set to start against the Red Devils on Sunday.

Ahead of the game, Pochettino said he understands Eriksen’s decision to delay signing a contract extension, insisting he trusts the midfielder.

“We hope that he can be here for a long time,” Pochettino said, according to Sky Sports.

“I think Christian is a fantastic player. I was in Copenhagen in the summer and spent a good time with my wife, and Christian, in a very nice restaurant!

“We hope that Christian can commit to the club with a long-term contract – but in football, business it is about timings and negotiations.

“He is ready to wait. Maybe sign this week, maybe sign in six months.

“For me, it is not a point to discuss. He is very committed with us and he is playing so well. He is a great player and I am so happy with him.

“He is a special person and you need to give him some freedom on the pitch. You cannot put him in a box to play, you need to give freedom and trust in him.

“It’s like my dog in the park – I say, ‘go, I trust in you!’. Christian, you need to trust in him. There is going to be a decision, and I hope he will commit to the club for the long term.”

How important is Eriksen to Spurs?

Eriksen has created 32 chances in the Premier League so far this season, at least eight more than any other Tottenham player – Kieran Trippier is second with 24.

The Dane has also popped up with crucial winning goals this season, netting the decisive strike against Inter Milan in the Champions League group stages and a last-minute winner against Burnley.

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