Opinion: A matter of time at Tottenham

Image: SpursWeb

I apologise in advance for the Spurs fans that will accuse me of living in the past with references to Mauricio Pochettino.

This article may not be for you so in the words of the Monday night news, you may want to look away now!

Trying to unravel the managerial mess at Spurs is a life’s work but I have taken some time to see where on earth we can go from here!

The sacking of Jose Mourinho was a shock to Spurs fans more for the timing than the decision itself. The cynics amongst us, namely Redknapp junior, suspect this was a decision generated by levels of compensation due that would spike in the event of silverware.

We may never know, although I suspect that Jose may not have as much issue with telling all and breaking the inevitable NDA, than some of his predecessors.

Some fans have been known to wish results to go against us to ensure a manager gets sacked. The chairman’s willingness to trade silverware to replace the manager shows quite how bad things must of been at the club. This wasn’t a decision purely motivated by results however and clearly the list of players Jose was willing to cast aside was mounting. Having your ‘marque,’ 200k a week signing on the bench was always going to give the chairman sleepless nights.

It remains to be seen if Mourinho’s methods were dated or just didn’t fit with Spurs. We are a club clearly lacking a winning mentality but the managers ‘approach’ did seem to be dangerously dividing the squad.

If Mourinho and Pochettino go on to have trophy-laden spells at other clubs maybe this will be a clue to where our issues truly lie…

Mourinho’s sacking has stark similarities to ENIC’s first week in office.  Then a manager who had enjoyed trophy-laden success at a London rival (THE London rival) had led Spurs to an FA Cup Semi-Final and won a League Cup. But largely on the back of attritional football George Graham was jettisoned the week of the Semi-Final.

The difference (which made the decision slightly more palatable at the time) was a new manager, Glenn Hoddle was waiting in the wings to take over. The sacking of Jose Mourinho thrust young Ryan Mason, 29 into the managerial hot seat.

I was delighted for Ryan, but a rookie manager against the best side in world football and one of the most successful coaches of a generation? That would have to be a massive fairy tale and one even the chairman can’t really have believed in. The plethora of semi-final and final defeats for Spurs since the last trophy shows that we don’t deal in fairy tales. I dare to dream with the rest of them but it is taking more and more cheese these days!

My biggest issue of the Jose era is the wasted time that will almost certainly result in the transfer of one Mr H Kane.  I really don’t think Harry has the time to put his faith in another rebuild. Let’s face it Jose Mourinho was never going to lay foundations – he was bought in to win trophies if this failed there was never going to be a legacy left.

The Kane situation has so many echoes of Alan Shearer at Newcastle. Striving to win trophies at your boyhood club, a massive club but always falling short. The one difference is Shearer was able to win the Premier League at Blackburn first.  Kyle Walker has won 7 trophies since leaving Spurs…..

The difference at other clubs is that Jose was given world-class players to work with at the club.  Spurs have spent money, an awful lot but they are not able to afford or attract the very best.  It’s like asking someone to win the Formula One World Championship in a Fiat 500…..

The prime example is the signing of Joe Roden. Absolutely nothing personal as I love Joe to bits and think he will be key in the next rebuild (see below). But this was a signing for early Poch Spurs. This can’t have been the choice of a man who was able to build a team around Ricardo Carvallo!

Although not realising at the time (clearly I wasn’t the only one) the barren transfer windows of the Poch era were so damaging. A team should always strive to improve even when they are perceived to be close to the pinnacle of their game. Perhaps the biggest current example of this is the tame title defence of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool.

So where do we go from here? The big-name manager hasn’t worked. We almost certainly need a young, innovative and hungry coach to oversee a rebuild. Ryan Mason quite correctly states we are probably 4-5 years behind the current Man City side.

I find Spurs pursuit of Brendon Rogers arrogant and a little embarrassing. Yes Spurs are a massive Club but Leicester are where we strive to be. I hope I am wrong as I think this would be a great appointment but cant see the Irishman trading Champions League football to potenially lead a side in Europe’s third-tier competition (all of a sudden Thursday nights don’t seem so bad!)

We are back to where we were pre Poch. The difference now is that any Manager will need to rebuild under the backdrop of the raised expectation created by the Argentinian. Under Poch top 4 was a ‘nice to have’ it’s now a minimum requirement.

It took Manchester United years to be able to have the nerve to allow a manager to rebuild in the spotlight. (Maybe David Moyes wasn’t so bad after all!) They are now beginning to reap the rewards.

The key at Spurs will be allowing the Manager tools to complete any project. This is something we aren’t particularly good at!

So with the season ticket renewed I along with 60,000 others will walk through the shiny front door next season. It remains to be seen if Spurs can come up with the football befitting the palatial surroundings.

Only time will tell…….

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