Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 11 December 2019

Next Spurs manager: Jose Mourinho, Rafa Benitez, Gareth Southgate and Erik Ten Hag among the contenders after Pochettino's sacking

Big names all in the frame for one of football's top jobs

Joe Mourinho, the former Manchester United, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss, is one of the top contenders to take over at Tottenham. PA
Joe Mourinho, the former Manchester United, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid boss, is one of the top contenders to take over at Tottenham. PA

Tottenham sacked manager Mauricio Pochettino after five-and-a-half years in charge, including an incredible run to the Champions League final only six months ago.

The moment Pochettino was fired on Tuesday night, the speculation started over who would take over at the London club. Here are the leading contenders:

Jose Mourinho

Could the self-styled 'Special One' take up another Premier League managerial post?

The Portuguese has been very positive about Tottenham and will be desperate to show he can still cut it in England after a disappointing end to his Manchester United tenure. He has long been linked to the role, and sources says talks have already taken place with chairman Daniel Levy.

He has won trophies wherever he has been, something that would certainly peak the interest of Levy, but the financial constraints placed on a man who became the first manager to rack up £1bn on transfers may deter the former Chelsea boss.

Rafael Benitez

Another man with plenty of Premier League experience and several pieces of silverware on his CV. Spent the last few seasons in England keeping Newcastle in the top-flight against the odds before moving to China but, despite the wages on offer in the far east, the Spaniard would be tempted back for such a big job.

Having worked under Mike Ashley at St James' Park he would be more accustomed to the way Tottenham operate and would even have more freedom than he was used to at Newcastle.

Eddie Howe

The Bournemouth boss would be an intriguing choice. Howe is now enjoying his fifth consecutive season as a Premier League manager having led the club to promotion in 2015 and has finished ninth, 12th and 14th in the past three years.

Could he make the step up to a side challenging for honours as well as managing a bigger budget? It would be an interesting watch, especially as the 41-year-old encourages attacking football.

Erik Ten Hag

Former Holland international Ten Hag has been earning plenty of plaudits for the job he is doing at Ajax.

He took a group of promising, precocious players to the semi-finals of the Champions League last season only to have their hearts broken by Pochettino's Tottenham - but he did collect the domestic league and cup double.

Like Howe, he promotes an attractive style and he also has a proven track record of working with - and improving - young players, with Tottenham's academy often producing enough talent ready to be shaped and moulded into first-team regulars.

Gareth Southgate

Another man who believes fully in the ability of youth - England manager Southgate would certainly be on any shortlist drawn up by Levy.

Not only has he given plenty of opportunities to exciting, up-and-coming talent, he has also worked with key members of the current Spurs squad - Harry Winks, Dele Alli, Danny Rose, Eric Dier and Three Lions skipper Harry Kane all having played international football under Southgate in recent times.

Massimiliano Allegri

The Italian left Juventus at the end of last season having been in charge in Turin since joining from AC Milan in 2014.

He won the Italian league title in each of his five seasons in charge while his trophy haul with the Bianconeri also included four Coppa Italia titles, with last season being the only time during his reign that they failed to secure the domestic double.

Updated: November 20, 2019 08:40 AM

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