If the reports from all the major media outlets are to be believed, it seems like Spurs are set to appoint Mauricio Pochettino for the job. But I think Frank De Boer is the more suitable candidate.
Pochettino has Premier League experience and also employs an exciting brand of football at Southampton. But he has done it only for one season. Two seasons ago when Levy sacked Redknapp, wasn’t Alan Pardew doing the same at Newcastle? Playing exciting football, bringing out the best of unproven players like Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse, guiding them to a fifth place finish and missing out on top four by a very narrow margin. What I’m trying to say is that Pochettino, although undoubtedly talented, needs more time before he can be judged. If one is giving the examples of small club managers like Roberto Martinez or Brendon Rodgers to help Pochettino’s case, both Martinez and Rodgers spent a lot of time with their previous clubs before taking the big step.
Frank De Boer has all the credentials to become a THFC manager except one, he is untested in Premier League. But Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho, Pellegrini were all untested at the time of their arrival yet they were successful in their first job in England. If you are a winner, then wherever you play or coach, it doesn’t matter because you carry that winning mentality with you. And FDB is a proven winner both as a coach and as a player. He played Champions League football with Ajax and Barcelona in a very illustrious career, and he has coached Ajax in the Champions League as well as winning the domestic title four times in his first four attempts. Also when he arrived, Ajax hadn’t won the league for eight years.
FDB will probably need a season to get accustomed to Premier League, but Pochettino will also need time to get used to manage a club of Spurs’ stature. Both FDB’s and Pochettino’s teams play exciting football and focuses on youth players. But unlike FDB, Pochettino hasn’t lost any of his star players yet. Each season Ajax lost their most influential players, FDB promotes someone from the academy and build the team again. They struggle till Christmas, they gel as a team by then and win the league.
Also FDB made a comment about Ajax that when he arrived, Ajax used to have plenty of possession but were not able to score and win, he said he just fixed that. Isn’t this the same problem Spurs suffering under AVB? Surely the same solutions can be tried here too!
Both Pochettino and FDB employ an exciting brand of football. But is that enough to be successful? Sometimes when things don’t go your way you have to find a way to win, exciting or ugly, doesn’t really matter. Managers like Brendon Rodgers, Pochettino, Martinez plays exciting football. But all of them fell short of their targets. Managers like Jose Mourinho are specialist in winning ugly and winning titles. While managers like Ferguson, Wenger, Pellegrini are a blend of both. FDB also falls in last category. He employs an exciting brand of football at Ajax, but also know how to win ugly to win titles. And in Spurs’ case the title will be a top four finish. We have fell short many times with so little margins that an ugly win or draw here and there would have sufficed. De Boer may be the man to get those extra 3-4 points.
If Levy appoints Pochettino, it won’t be a bad appointment but knowing that we could have had better, I will be a little disappointed.
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