Alderweireld unlucky not to make PFA shortlist, says Pochettino

Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino says Toby Alderweireld was unlucky not to be named on the shortlist for the PFA Players' Player of the Year.

Alderweireld has been in impeccable form since joining Spurs in an £11m deal last summer, helping them forge the best defense in the division having conceded 53 goals last season - more than relegated Hull City.

The Belgium international has been helped by spending much of the season playing alongside compatriot Jan Vertonghen, although Kevin Wimmer proved an able deputy when Vertonghen was ruled out for three months through injury.

Speaking ahead of Monday's clash with Stoke, Pochettino was full of praise for Alderweireld and although he feels defenders are under-appreciated when it comes to awards and recognition, he says the snub will not affect his player.

"Football is to score goals," Pochettino said. "But for us like a manager it is very important for me the keeper and defensive line are in the same level of importance of player.

"I cannot do anything about this because I am not involved in the selection of the players. There is no defensive player on the list and I have nothing to say but I am happy with him.

"His performances have been fantastic from beginning of the season and he doesn't need to be recognized to feel that."