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Harry Kane goal decision no big deal - Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino

LONDON -- Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino has said he played no part in the decision to appeal for the second goal in their 2-1 win at Stoke to be awarded to Harry Kane rather than Christian Eriksen.

Pochettino said the Premier League Goal Accreditation Appeals Panel's decision to credit it to Kane was "not a big deal" despite Liverpool's Mohamed Salah -- ahead of Kane as the Premier League's leading scorer -- reacting with surprise.

"Harry's a very honest person, he's not going to lie about this situation," the manager told a news conference.

"I don't care who scored the goal, I care about the three points. But that was a club decision to appeal -- I wasn't involved in this decision.

"It's not a big deal, I promise you. Harry is generous, a person who always puts the collective ahead of himself.

"Of course all strikers want to score and they have their skill -- they are aggressive, they have this determination -- but Harry always shows his commitment to the team, with his teammates.

"I promise, it's not a big deal. No one's talked about that this week inside the club. I hope that Harry and Christian can score on Saturday and everyone is happy."

Harry Kane claimed, and was later awarded, Spurs' second goal at Stoke.

Meanwhile, Pochettino said he was concerned about Harry Winks' fitness, with the midfielder at a specialist facility in Qatar for treatment on a long-term ankle problem.

Winks is still suffering from an injury sustained against Crystal Palace in November, and although he has since made 12 appearances he has not played since the FA Cup win over Rochdale in February.

The 22-year-old, who withdrew from the England under-21 squad last month, is in Doha at a leading sports medicine hospital.

"Yes [it is a concern]," Pochettino said. "We hope after that period he can come back fixing his problem and try to again stay in the group training.

"But of course we are a little bit concerned about his situation and we're trying to fix his problem. We need to wait now to assess him and we need the news from there, but always with the hope that all is going to be good."

Asked whether Winks would play again this season, Pochettino said: "We'll see, it's impossible now to say or guess what's going to happen. But like always, it's about how he's going to react to the treatment and everything."

Danny Rose is Tottenham's only other injury absentee for the visit of Manchester City on Saturday with a minor calf problem, but Toby Alderweireld is again expected to be left out the squad.

Centre-half Alderweireld was not in the 18 for the wins over Chelsea and Stoke, despite playing for Belgium last month, and has not featured in the Premier League since October after a hamstring tear.

During the 29-year-old's injury, contract talks broke down due to his demands for a long-term deal worth in excess of £160,000-a-week.

But Pochettino said: "After 14 games unbeaten there's no point talking about a player that did not play and was injured for a long time.

"But if you want to Toby is still our player, with a two-year contract. I'm sure he's going to play until the end of the season.

"He's doing well, he's training and he only needs to wait for his opportunity."

Spurs are unbeaten in 14 league matches since their 4-1 defeat to City at the Etihad Stadium in December, but Pochettino warned that there was "still a lot of work to do" to finish in the top four despite a 10-point lead over fifth-placed Chelsea.

He also urged fans to give Kyle Walker, who left Spurs for City in a big-money deal last summer, a good reception on Saturday.

Dan is ESPN FC's Tottenham correspondent. Follow him on Twitter: @Dan_KP.

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