Ange Postecoglou has declared that he would be ultimately responsible if he is not able to achieve success at Tottenham Hotspur, having now accepted the challenge.
Both Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte publicly blamed the players when things went downhill for them at Spurs, with the latter even accusing his squad of being ‘selfish’ and remarking that they could not handle the pressure in what proved to be his final press conference (Football. London).
However, Postecoglou has insisted that he has been pleased with the mentality and the attitude of the squad from the day he took over the job.
When asked about Conte’s complaints about the club lacking a winning mentality, the Australian told talkSPORT: “It’s not my place to talk about other managers, because I don’t think it’s fair. I’ve often said that until you walk a mile in somebody’s shoes, you can’t really know what they’re dealing with.
“What I know is that for me a winning mentality… It’s a funny one. I grew up in Australia where we love sport, we want to win everything, we’re a small nation and we’re usually doing it as an underdog — going into every contest being written off and using that in your favour.
“For me, a winning mentality is that you come in every day and you just want to be the best you can be. And it’s got to be born from something else because there isn’t a football club, manager or player on this planet that does not want to win. I refuse to believe that anyone goes into a game of football — irrespective of the odds they need to overcome — not trying to win.
“My thing is: it’s not just about the winning, it’s about playing the game. You’ve got to believe in something more than just the victory because everyone wants to win, and for me, it’s the way we play. That’s what it comes down to.
“What I’ve seen since I got here is a group of players who are open to that, have embraced that. It’s challenging, it’s going to test us, we’re going to stumble and fall along the way, but when we get to where we want to and play the football we want to, the winning should take care of itself.”
Postecoglou and Daniel Levy are on the same page
Some of Postecoglou’s predecessors have found it quite challenging to work with Daniel Levy but the Australian insisted that he and the Spurs chairman are on the same page with regards to the direction that they want to take the club.
The 58-year-old insisted that he has been offered the support that he wants from the club’s hierarchy, and would thus ultimately be responsible if he is not able to deliver what is promised.
When asked about the importance of his relationship with Levy, Postecoglou said: “I think it’s essential. I think the reason I’ve had success at just about every club I’ve gone to is that they’ve identified what they need in the next phase of whatever that club cycle is, in terms of the style of football, the environment and all of those kind of things.
“I come out as the last man standing in that process. When I see that I see the club is a good fit for me. The one thing about me is that when I come in I’m not going to compromise on certain things.
“I make that clear in the discussions before I accept the role. When the other party, in this case Tottenham and Daniel, decide to go with me then I knew that they were open to going in my direction.
“Then it’s down to me. After that, I’m going to take responsibility for what happens here, good bad or otherwise. If I don’t succeed it’s not going to be because of something that exists within this club or external factors, because I haven’t been able to do what I want to do from myself.
“The process now is about me gaining the trust of everyone within the football club, the supporters, the people who run and own this club, the management, the players, the staff. That’s up to me.
“It’s all up to me from now on. The only thing I ever asked for was that door to be open and to be supported, which I have been. From here on it’s really down to me because I’ve accepted the role. I’ve accepted whatever challenges exist inside this football club and I’ll take responsibility for that.”
Spurs Web Opinion
It is extremely refreshing to hear a manager take responsibility after what we endured under Mourinho and Conte. The huge egos that they had meant that both of them always looked to absolve themselves of blame whenever the team failed to deliver, which is a sign of poor leadership.
Postecoglou’s statement about taking responsibility for any failure also shows a confidence in his own coaching ability that neither Mourinho nor Conte displayed. In fact, one can argue their bloated ego was a sign of their own insecurity about how they compared against the likes of Klopp and Guardiola.
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