It Will Be Difficult For Tottenham To Attract A Top Manager


If as is widely expected, Tottenham decide to replace Tim Sherwood during the close season, they will find it difficult to appoint a top class manager to take on the manager’s role at White Hart Lane.

Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp is the latest manager to be linked with Tottenham should the decision to axe Tim Sherwood be taken at the end of the season. Yesterday, the Sun reported the Tottenham interest while the Mirror were linking him with Manchester United should they decide not to continue with David Moyes at Old Trafford.

Klopp joins a lengthy list of possible candidates should a vacancy occur at White Hart Lane but Tottenham could find it difficult to persuade a top manager to come to Spurs and it could prove equally troublesome to make a speedy appointment to avoid uncertainty dragging on through the summer.

Louis van Gaal who has been constantly linked with Spurs since the sacking of Andre Villas-Boas last December, has stated a desire to manage in the Premier League, as has Klopp. Both, however, will take time to weigh up the possible options available to them, knowing of the potential for vacancies at other clubs – Manchester United or Arsenal – where there is uncertainty about the future of the current managers. Should the chance to join either club or others in Europe become a possibility, Tottenham would rapidly slip down their list of preferences.

The attitude of Tottenham supporters is one of aiming high, go for the best and don’t accept a second rate manager. Very admirable but being realistic the top managers on our ‘wish-list’ will have other options and when they look at Spurs may decide that it is an appointment best avoided.

Last December, following the sacking of AVB, having helped to bring it about with his team’s 5 – 0 success at White Hart Lane, the Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said he was relieved to have avoided the Tottenham post in 2012. In the Daily Express report, Rodgers said of Tottenham,

"A close shave. They are a great club and one of the things I looked at was their history. They’d had 11 managers in 18 years there."

His comments annoyed me when I first read them but what he said is actually an accurate assessment of the situation at the club. Tottenham are a club who have it in their DNA to change manager and what top manager will want to accept an appointment where there is a real possibility of his career nose-diving inside 18 months and becoming the 14th manager to be sacked by Tottenham in 21 years.

That is just one of a number of issues which would be off-putting for a top manager. A younger manager may be prepared to take the chance but an established manager would be reluctant to put their reputation on the line.

Tottenham Hotspur are regular under-achievers although in reality in their financial position they are probably doing as well as can be expected. The expectations of the club and the fans, however, are always much higher, immediately putting a manager under pressure.

  • Tottenham have failed to qualify for the Champions League and may miss out on any European football next season.

Will a top manager be prepared to come to a club without the exposure of European football? Managers are like players they want to be involved at the highest level.

    Tottenham’s record of heavy defeats against top sides will raise questions on the character of the current squad.

Will a top manager want to take on the challenge to change the mindset of the players?

  • Tottenham is a club who sells their top players, stretching back over many seasons – Michael Carrick, Dimitar Berbatov, Luka Modric, Rafael Van der Vaart, Gareth Bale

Will a top manger want to come to Spurs this summer if there is uncertainty over players like Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen and even Christian Eriksen?

  • Tottenham’s ‘guarantees’ of no players leaving can’t be relied upon.

Just ask the players who signed last July having been told that Gareth Bale wasn’t to be sold.

  • Tottenham signed 7 players last summer but with the sacking of AVB the question of who was responsible for those transfers became an issue.

Did AVB get the players he wanted, did Franco Baldini make all the decisions or was Daniel Levy the person with the real control?

Some will regard this as a negative attack on Spurs and question my support of the club rather than a realistic assessment of where the club is currently. The uncertainty surrounding issues like these which have been widely documented in the media are hardly conducive to attracting a top manager.  Tottenham will have to hope that they can find a top manager prepared to come to White Hart Lane and that the appointment can be agreed quickly so as to enable the new boss to prepare throughly for next season.

I sincerely hope that Spurs can find that manager and that he will lead the club to the success we all desire and have waited for over such a lengthy period.