Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino had a meeting with Barcelona president Josep Maria Bartomeu this week.
Pochettino and Bartomeu was seen at a restaurant in the city, where the Spurs boss still have a house from his days playing for Espanyol.
Pochettino was among the few candidates linked with taking over at the Nou Camp after Luis Enrique announced his decision to step down in the summer earlier this week. However, Tottenham claim they knew about the meeting and assure the pair have long been close friends.
It’s still not clear if Pochettino had Tottenham’s permission to meet Bartomeu but the get-together will eventually encourage the speculation about his future.
The Argentinian signed a new five-year deal at White Hart Lane in May but when questioned over a move to Barcelona earlier this month, he didn’t categorically rule it out.
Pochettino is a former player and coach of Espanyol, Barcelona’s city rivals. He has suggested in the past that this would make it difficult for him to work for Barcelona.
“I am periquito,” he said last September, referring to Espanyol’s nickname. “The Espanyol supporters are different to the Barcelona supporters. For me, Espanyol supporters are better because I am Espanyol supporter. That creates a bit of a problem between us.
“Always it was special to beat Barcelona because it is my sporting enemy. I am from Argentina but I spent half my life in Barcelona and my two sons were born in Barcelona.”
Pochettino was also seen having lunch with former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson last year before confirming his new deal, although Spurs insist they were aware of that meeting too. Tottenham have made huge improvement under Pochettino since his arrival from Southampton in 2014.
They currently sit second in the Premier League table, with 10 games to play, and are on course to secure Champions League qualification for a second consecutive year.