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Inside Lane: Who should Spurs appoint as their next manager?

Ajax's coach Frank de Boer Ajax's coach Frank de Boer

By Henry Tribe
Thursday, May 1, 2014
7:40 AM

Tottenham blogger Henry Tribe casts his eye over the top candidates for the manager’s post at White Hart Lane.

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Southampton boss Mauricio PochettinoSouthampton boss Mauricio Pochettino

Tim Sherwood says other managers shouldn’t be “touting” for his job, but I think even he knows he’s only got two games left in charge. So who’s next for the hot-seat? I could list all the managers I’d want but haven’t got a hope of getting.

There’s Carlo Ancelotti, Jurgen Klopp, Diego Simeone, or Roberto Martinez – but let’s be realistic about this.

One thing you can be certain of is they won’t be English – Glenn Hoddle is the best-priced Englishman with the bookmakers and to be frank I’d rather have a young and inexperienced Tim than go back 11 years.

Some Spurs fans have very short memories, and we’ve come an awfully long way since the days of dire mid-table finishes.

Napoli manager Rafael BenitezNapoli manager Rafael Benitez

Ideally you’d follow the Liverpool or Everton model. Take a gamble on a young, talented and ambitious Premier League manager who’s excelled with another club.

This approach isn’t without risk and it’s crucial to give them time. Would Daniel Levy have sacked Brendan Rogers if he’d finished seventh with Spurs, as Liverpool did last season?

The only candidate that really fits this mould is Mauricio Pochettino and I can understand why he’s firmly in the frame.

He’s worked wonders with Southampton, turning a team in danger of relegation into one that can be described as “the best of the rest” in eighth position, while playing fantastic football with an English core.

I do have some reservations, namely the fact that after almost 18 months he still conducts post-match interviews in Spanish, and he did inherit some excellent young players thanks to Southampton’s academy.

His marquee signing, £15million man Dani Osvaldo, was a flop and is now out on loan. However, he is highly-regarded in Spain from his time with Espanyol and could well fit the bill for Levy.

My preference, however, would be for someone more experienced to steady the ship for the next couple of years.

Tottenham is a club in turmoil at the moment and in my view it needs someone with a huge personality who will instantly gain the respect of the players.

To this end, Louis Van Gaal would be ideal, although inevitably Old Trafford-bound. But I’ve long been an admirer of Rafa Benitez, who is currently in charge of Napoli, and his track record in the Premier League speaks for itself. He turned Liverpool from perennial underachievers into champions of Europe, and did well very well at Chelsea last season in difficult circumstances.

He is exceptional tactically and would immediately set about sorting the defence out and make us much harder to beat in big games against the top four. With all of that in mind, Benitez would be my top choice.

Other names include Frank de Boer, of course, and he stated this week that “Spurs have made an approach” – a claim Tottenham have refuted.

De Boer has done well at Ajax but is untried elsewhere. Meanwhile, Gus Poyet has been mentioned as a possibility. I have a feeling he’ll be Spurs manager one day, but not yet.

Then of course there’s a certain David Moyes. The fact he’s available for nothing may appeal to Levy, but the Spurs fans at Stoke on Saturday made it perfectly clear we don’t want someone who is arguably even more defensively-minded than AVB!

I’d like our ‘chosen one’ to bring back the free-flowing football of three years ago. Whoever it is, we must get behind them and the club has to give them the time and budget to turn things around.

Follow me on Twitter @tribalspurs

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