(Reuters) - Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino will accept the English Football Association’s improper conduct charge for confronting the referee after Saturday’s shock 2-1 Premier League defeat by Burnley, the Argentine said on Tuesday.
The loss dealt a blow to third-placed Tottenham’s title hopes and Pochettino appeared to vent his frustration at referee Mike Dean in a furious exchange, but the 46-year-old apologised to the official ahead of Wednesday’s league trip to Chelsea.
“I will accept that charge. Watching my behaviour afterwards on video, I need to accept the charge from the FA,” Pochettino told a news conference.
“I need to apologise to Mike Dean, I can’t behave that way. It’s not the way to behave and I’m going to accept the charge.
“My behaviour was public and now I want to apologise in a public way. I need to apologise to him and all the officials.”
Pochettino, who faces the prospect of a fine or a touchline ban, would not reveal what Dean said to him which appeared to provoke the reaction.
“All that happened on the pitch stays on there. I think that is the most important, we need to accept that we are with our emotion,” Pochettino added.
“It’s not important, I don’t take it personally. When your heart rate is so high you need to be careful how you take words. All that happened on the pitch, I’ll never translate off it.”
Meanwhile, midfielders Dele Alli (hamstring) and Eric Dier (tonsillitis) will miss the match at sixth-placed Chelsea.
Tottenham are on 60 points from 27 games in the league, six points behind leaders Liverpool and five behind champions Manchester City.
Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge