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What next for Tottenham Hotspur?

Mauricio Pochettino was finally sacked after an underwhelming start to the season but even more surprising was the swift appointment of Jose Mourinho in less than 12 hours.

Sourav Ghosh
Last updated: 21.11.2019
Mauricio Pochettino sacked and Jose Mourinho appointed | Sports Social Blog

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It’s been a roller coaster couple of days for Tottenham with a lot happening within a small time span.


Mauricio Pochettino was finally sacked after an underwhelming start to the season (more on this later) but even more surprising was the swift appointment of Jose Mourinho in less than 12 hours from Poch being shown the door.



Now, these two events are, by no means, small in any regard. Sacking a manager after nearly 5 and a half years in charge and appointing someone who is pretty much the polar opposite, is bound to have certain repercussions. Before we dive into all of that which is pretty much the point of this, let’s take a look at what chairman, Daniel levy had to say.


On Pochettino’s sacking -

"We were extremely reluctant to make this change and it is not a decision the board has taken lightly, nor in haste," Levy told the club's website.

“Regrettably, domestic results at the end of last season and beginning of this season have been extremely disappointing.

“It falls to the Board to make the difficult decisions - this one made more so given the many memorable moments we have had with Mauricio and his coaching staff - but we do so in the Club's best interests.”

“Mauricio and his coaching staff will always be part of our history. I have the utmost admiration for the manner in which he dealt with the difficult times away from a home ground whilst we built the new stadium and for the warmth and positivity he brought to us. I should like to thank him and his coaching staff for all they have contributed. They will always be welcome here.

“We have a talented squad. We need to re-energize and look to deliver a positive season for our supporters.”


On Mourinho’s appointment -


“In Jose, we have one of the most successful managers in football,” Levy told the club’s official website.


“He has a wealth of experience, can inspire teams and is a great tactician. He has won honors at every club he has coached. We believe he will bring energy and belief to the dressing room.”



Alright, let’s take a look at why Poch was sacked in the first place.

While it was a pretty marvelous achievement for Spurs to reach the Champions League final without spending even a dime on transfers throughout the whole of last season, we need to bear in mind that Spurs did not exactly have a great league season. They looked like title challengers in the starting stages only to fizz off and finish fourth at the end.


A lot was expected this season with new recruits in the form of Tanguy Ndombele, Ryan Sessegnon and Lo Celso. However, that has not been the case.

Spurs are currently 14th in the Premier League with just 3 wins, 5 draws and 4 losses to their name. If you go through Levy’s statements, you will find that that is the reason behind Poch’s sacking. In the Champions League, Spurs were given a solid 2-7 thrashing at the hands of Bayern Munich while also being eliminated by Colchester in the League Cup. Add to that player unrest and certain players not willing to commit to new contracts.


All this doesn’t really paint a good picture and you would feel that sacking Poch was somewhat the right decision.


Appointing Mourinho.

Now the thing is, Spurs have replaced him with Jose Mourinho. The Special One had been out of management since December last year when he was sacked by Manchester United after a series of underwhelming results.

This will be Mourinho’s 4th stint in England which by now has given everyone a clear idea as to what he might bring to the table. Short term success and nothing more.


Whatever philosophy and playing style that was ingrained in this squad by Poch over the last couple of years, i.e. free-flowing attack based, youth-centric football, will most likely be overhauled to a more pragmatic, experience-based and safety first oriented style under Mourinho.


This is not just conjecture but it’s pretty much what we have seen over more than a decade from teams that have been managed by him. It was always based on a solid rearguard with rapid counter-attacking forwards. A prime example would be his Real Madrid team of 2011-12 that broke goal scoring records for fun.


His managerial record speaks for itself with multiple European titles, a galore of league titles in England, Serie A, and Spain with countless other cups and so on. Perhaps that was one of the main reasons Spurs decided to hire him. Given that Spurs haven’t won anything since the league cup way back in 2008-09, it makes a lot of sense that a serial winner like Mourinho would be preferred.


So, what’s the catch?

While Mourinho is pretty much a sure shot way to get your hands on a trophy, it’s what happens after the 2nd season that should worry pretty much every everyone at a club.


It is at this point exactly where you think that Mourinho will take the club to a new level of success that it starts to implode. Clashes with the board, fans, senior and important players and whatnot. This has happened at every club he has been at and not one bit different.


Small question.

It is understandable to go for a coach like Mourinho to end a club’s trophy drought but given how stringent Spurs chairman Levy is, how will it work with Mourinho who has a history of spending huge amounts on superstars. Let’s say that he is willing to give more funds to the new manager, then why not back Pochettino with the same funds.

Food for thought...



Spurs have been a pretty stable club over the last few years and they have gradually become Champions League regulars but have always fallen short in the final push. That is perhaps also one of the reasons why Poch got sacked. He did have a good squad with a few world-class players like Kane, Eriksen, etc. The onus will now be on Mourinho to take that last step.


The Premier League without Mourinho is never quite as flavorful. Fiery press conferences, altercations with officials, taunting opposition, lifting silverware, throwing fits. We’ve seen it all before but there’s always something new waiting.

It’s something special about the man that makes him worthy of the name. Quite what he will bring to Spurs, we know, but it’s better left to unfold by itself.

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