Hiring Mourinho now akin to dating Pamela Anderson…
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Parallels between Poch and Klopp
Not sure I saw anyone write in about whether they thought the Pochettino playing style was ultimately his demise and the cause of Spurs most recent decline. After all, the decline has not just been this season but the second half of last season. Spurs have been one of the worst teams in 2019.
In some way it reflects a similar situation with Klopp at Dortmund. Starting spectacularly but unable to halt their decline in the end.
It is noticeable that over the last two seasons Klopp has altered his model from a hard pressing team to a team that tries to retain possession and become more strategic in their pressing. Each time Klopp has made alterations in their playing style it is critiqued, usually negatively, yet has probably been the reason Liverpool continue to progress.
But with Pochettino running into a wall in motivating the team and keeping up the high energy (as Klopp did at the end at Dortmund) perhaps Pochettino needed to change things up?
This says more about managers who are unable to change their style, to adapt. So it is interesting that Spurs have brought in Mourinho, who clearly didn’t change or adapt in his last two roles. No question he is ambitious and driven to win and under the right circumstance can make Spurs very competitive again. After all, Spurs still have a phenomenal squad. He has said he has learned from his mistakes.
Time will tell which Mourinho we get. But more interested to see what happens with Pochettino. Clearly he could motivate a new team and get them performing well, but could, Bielsa style, have them hitting a brickwall in a couple of years if he doesn’t adapt as well.
Like dating Pamela Anderson
I’m gobsmacked at how many Spurs supporters seem happy with JosÃ© because he’s a world class manager. It’s like dating Pamela Andersson 20 years too late, and I know how this will end. We’ve appointed a man with questionable morals who has previously managed some of our most bitter rivals; both he and his football are dour and pragmatic but have been winners in the past; he will win us 1 cup in 3 years and divide the supporters. Them young ‘ens might not remember, but this is 1998 all over. We’ve just appointed George bloody Graham again. Feck me. 21 years of slow progress down the drain.
Jock Stockton, THFC
Can’t move on from Jose
I am sure we have all had an ex we should have never been with in the first place.
One who is bad for you but who says all the right things.
One, who when you are with them ignites your passions before it all ends in a massive bust up.
But you can never really let them go.
Jose is that ex.
When he was Utd manager at the start he said all the right things, arrived looking tanned and fresh in a crisp white shirt, â¬500 hair cut and â¬2000 suit, won a couple of trophies, seemed like he brought the old Utd back.
Then it all turned, he let himself go a little bit, swapped the suits for tracksuits and we all know how it ended.
Now though he is back, with a new love, again with the crisp white shirt, â¬500 hair cut and â¬2000 suit and winter tan looking a million dollars and saying all the right things.
And like the ex you canât let go, you are looking on, forgetting all the bad things, and wishing he was still with you.
This applies not just to Spurs and Utd, but to the Premier League as a whole.
We just canât let Jose go.
I’m starting to get the feeling that this Mourinho appointment is going to work out for Spurs. They have a brilliant squad that is hugely underperforming and Mourinho has come in with a point to prove rather than an axe to grind. Time will tell, but he sounds different.
You also missed Dele Alli off your list of five players who will benefit from his arrival. I can see the Kane/Alli partnership reinvigorated. Alli will love Mourinho; he’s a total shithouse who has lost his edge. He will be back with a vengeance.
All of this could be bad news for Leicester. It could be even worse if Man U wake up and replace OGS before Christmas.
Jaymo, LCFC (Looking at you too Chelsea)
Come on, Son
Comparing the relationship Son Heung-min might have with Jose to that of Martial or Hazard is a bit of a stretch. I actually think Son will flourish even more under Jose and become a proper world class player.
In reality, it wasnât the fragility of the characters of Martial/Hazard that Jose didnât like, it was their egos and their inability to carry out the tactical instructions Jose wanted. Son is the complete opposite- he is every managerâs dream player who will tirelessly fulfil whatever you want of him. Those kind of players have always done well under Mourinho wherever he has been and heâs turned them into better players.
Now see, Alex Ayr and Amro Gooner, what you’re doing there is trying to apply the same measure of success as a flat rate for all clubs. Where your argument goes astray is that not all clubs are equal, therefore not all clubs have the same ambitions and expectations. Comparing what success would be for Amro’s example of a league two team narrowly missing out on a Premier League title to what Spurs’ realistic ambitions are is not a comparable situation. And Alex comparing business work to football – just stop it, it’s not the same and you know it’s not.
Yes, Pochettino has undoubtedly improved Spurs since 2014 (this season excepted) but if you think that his plan would have been to leave the club having won nothing at all – not even a measley League Cup (not measley, I love the League Cup) – by the time he left then you are out of your mind. Forget what Spurs would have been aiming for in his first season, hell, maybe even his first three; Spurs’ expectations would naturally have increased as time went on and they got better. That they weren’t challenging for silverware when he took over does not mean that they should not have been by the time he was leaving.
Under Pochettino, Spurs finished 3rd, 2nd, 3rd and 4th in the league between 2015/16 and 2018/19; a team achieving those kinds of league results should absolutely be aiming to pair that level of performance with at least an FA Cup or League Cup win. Swansea and Birmingham have both won League Cups in the last 10 years, while Cardiff, Aston Villa, Bradford, Sunderland and Southampton have also reached the finals in that same period. The FA Cup was won by Wigan, and Portsmouth, Stoke, Hull, Aston Villa, Crystal Palace and Watford have all reached the final in the last decade. Even Leicester have won a league time more recently than Spurs last won any trophy at all. Given the history of these competitions, a team with the stature of Spurs should definitely have been targetting at least one cup win before the end of Pochettino’s tenure.
The fact remains that Spurs are a team that have been regularly finishing in the top four of the top tier of English football. If their target was not to win a trophy (any trophy) then they have been disgracefully negligent of their role as a supposed top football club – which I’m confident their fans at least believe they are. At some point you have to make the step from being happy to be in the running for a title to actually achieving it; given the standard of football being played, the players at their disposal, and their own league performance, a cup win should have been a target.
So, yes, it is right to say that winning trophies is not the only barometer of success for all clubs as standard. However, for a club that is actually challenging for (finishing second) the two hardest trophies to win, you cannot reasonably claim that winning trophies was not an eventual target for Pochettino and Spurs. Yes, he’s made them better and improved the stature of the club, but on balance he has only been – at best – a partial success. If he was anything more than that then why, I wonder, did they fire him and replace him with a man who’s main selling point is winning trophies through whatever means necessary?
…Alex, Ayr: Trophies of course are not the only measure of success, but when you are managing a team who are expected to compete at the top end, trophies are your bread and butter.
The fact you have resorted to comparing Pochettino and Spurs with Howe at Bournemouth, and Dyche at Burnley, accidentally and clumsily proves the point you were arguing against. These clubs have significantly lower expectations than Spurs. Does that mean Howe and Dyche are not successes? Absolutely not.
And as for comparing the job of a football manager with your own, then that is where you lose any sense of relativity. Most normal jobs donât have trophies for them. You can be a successful anything without having a trophy handed to you.
…The responses to my “Trophies = Success” mail make some valid points. The managers mentioned and the scenario of going up the leagues can, in their own way, consider themselves successful for the jobs they have done. I will also give the example of Daniel Farke at Norwich. Nobody in their right mind expects them to be winning any trophies. Keeping them in the Premier League would be seen as successful for a club of that stature and if Farke manages to pull that off then he has every right to claim that as a successful part of his managerial career.
However, we are talking about Pochettino as manager of Tottenham Hotspur, one of the so called “Big 6”. This is a club, a team, and a manager who are capable of actually winning silverware. A side that this manager, as I have mentioned before, has given constant Champions League qualification. Yet the domestic cups, competitions they would have a good shout at, were dumped to the side by Pochettino to focus on top 4 and Champions League campaigns, which all but one have ended prematurely. That cannot be excused, and I have always said the same thing when Klopp has done the same.
The narritive regarding Pochettino and Spurs has always been them punching above their weight to get to where they are despite their financial constraints and how amazing they are for doing so. However, should they fall short in a league season or Cup final then it’s the same narrative that is used for an excuse. You can’t have it both ways.
Pochettino absolutely needed more financial backing, of that there is no doubt, but I can’t imagine he was happy with simply finishing in the top 4, putting the odd bit of pressure for a few weeks on the eventual league Champions, and falling in the last 16 or 8 of the Champions League each year. If Spurs and Pochettino were happy with that then they have become Post Highbury Arsenal, complete with their new stadium. The difference is that Wenger had won things prior to that, Poch has not.
It’s always going to be a divisive subject about what can be concidered success in football, especially for managers. For some, getting into the Premier League could be it. For some, qualifying for European Football may be it. But for me, especially when you are managing one of the biggest clubs and best teams in Europe, you have to be winning trophies to be considered successful. It’s what truly matters to the supporters and is what is remembered in 20 years time. Alex Ferguson and Bob Paisley are not widely regarded as two of the most successful managers of all time because of constant top 4 finishes.
Curtis, LFC, Belfast (Now watch Poch go to Bayern and win the heap)
Striker solution for Man Utd
Just a short mail about a potential signing for Man Utd. United need a striker. France need this striker to play. And this striker is stuck behind two strikers in a team that only plays one. Giroud to United makes a lot of sense on a 6 month loan. We need someone to take the burden off of Rashford and Martial and I feel Giroud would be a perfect player to link up with both. I think it would really work which is why it will never happen.
Oisin (he would make far more sense than mandzukic), Dublin
I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed an international break more.
But tomorrow we get back to the turgid torture of the Emery era.
The club could have given everyone a lift – especially young Torriera – by firing Emery and installing a new manager but instead there’ll be row on row of empty seats as Arsenal lose an early goal and get a late equaliser – probably through Torriera, which Emery will use to justify playing the lad out of position.
At least under Wenger when we came to see these sorts of matches you could hope that we might play some lovely football and spank the inferior opposition.
With Emery, I’m expecting a dour 1-1 draw in the rain – and he’ll still keep his job.
Graham Simons, Gooner, Norf London
McTominay is nothing to be proud of
So Will Ford says that it will sicken Mourinho that solskjaer is getting the plaudits for making Scott McTominay the heatbeat of his midfield. Considering McTominay is an average midfielder at best probably isn’t something to be proud of having him as the heartbeat. Sure he tries very hard, has lots passion, lots of pointing and shouting and chest beating but in terms of footballing ability mediocre at best. Maybe he will be a great midfielder eventually but he is certainly not what any club with serious ambitions of winning the league needs at this moment in time. The fact he’s the shineist shit in the bucket shouldn’t be something to praise a manager for. It’s easy to standout when you play beside Fred who can’t seem to control the ball or pass forward and Pereira who doesn’t seem to do much of anything at all.
Aaron. CFC. Ireland.
Not sure how many people saw the documentary about the Corinthian Casuals on tv last night, itâs been on BT Sport I think. Itâs a story about an amateur team formed in the 19th century that competed in England in an attempt to beat a more organised Scotland team who had been beating them regularly. At one point they fielded every single player in the england team and have inflicted the biggest defeat on Man Utd.
They went on to inspire Corinthians in Brazil and to this day there is an amazing connection with Brazil, apparently even today the amateur team still get Brazilians making pilgrimages to their games because of their love of their team and the history of that team. A whole generation of English Corinthian players were gunned down in the First World War and the team had to start again. These players were some of the players who played football against Germany on Christmas Day. We have had discussion on this site about the poppy……think about these working class men who were the best footballers in this country and they gave their lives. You donât have to buy a poppy, just donât forget them.
One of the interesting things about this team was they believed in the Corinthian spirit, they believed in behaving like gentleman. This is something that really stands out for me, I donât get annoyed by diving or players basically being twats but when you hear about things like this it dies make me wish there was more of this today. The penalty rule was introduced and described as a deliberate foul, they did not believe it was possible for gentlemen to do this so they would deliberately miss penalties or the goalkeeper would step aside.
Amid all the bullshit we see every day in football, letâs not forget about the roots of our game. And btw I think they are short of cash so if anyone out there has a few million kicking around please send to this club…….it would be an amazing act.
Graham Kirk, Sunny Manchester
It’s the little things
There are a few things that genuinely brighten up any football match for me.
When a striker nips past a defender doing that â shepherd it out â thing and gets the ball
A top class player completely miss hitting the ball and looking at the turf.
A double sending off ( whether it leaves 10 a side or 11v9 )
But my absolute favourite sight in football by a country mile is reserved for international & cup football. I genuinely love when during one of those games that must by law referred to as David & Goliath, a farmer/plumber/PE teacher etc embarrasses a top class pro â and it always happens. It might be a nutmeg, a little drag back or a wee quick shoulder drop but it ALWAYS happens at least once ( usually around the centre circle somewhere ). And the noise the crowd make when it does is priceless.
Doug, AFC, Belfast3
Pint of screamer, please
Lee, the eternal nostalgist, I donât know what has happened to the Highbury Screamer but my mate owns the bar opposite the Emirates called The Highbury Library and they have had a beer made for them called the Highbury Screamer. Hope this quenches your search.
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