The inside story of Mauricio Pochettino's demise at Tottenham Hotspur


There's a quote from the film 'La Grande Belezza' that springs to mind this morning.

"What's wrong with nostalgia? It's the only distraction left for those who've no faith in the future."

Tottenham fans had barely had time to grieve Mauricio Pochettino's sacking before the news broke that Jose Mourinho had succeeded him. 

The Argentine's reign comes to an end after five-and-a-half years and some of the most glorious nights in Spurs' recent history. 

The pinnacle came just six months ago with the north Londoners' unthinkable comeback against Ajax to reach the Champions League final. 

From thrashing Real Madrid at Wembley, beating Chelsea at Stamford Bridge for the first time in 28 years, two FA Cup semi-finals, a League Cup final, to finishing above Arsenal and those two title challenges in the final years at White Hart Lane - Pochettino was the ultimate steward to lead a team he created into the new era and a new stadium. 

When he took over from Tim Sherwood, much of the above was unthinkable for a group of Europa League also-rans. 

Who could possibly have foreseen that it would all come crashing down around him so soon, a victim of his own success.

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A picture is already beginning to emerge of exactly what went wrong, with the Athletic detailing a complete breakdown of his relationship with the dressing room. Players would frequently say to one another "don't look at the boss", tired of him over-analysing everything they did on and off the pitch. 

Many of them believed he would be on his way soon. The Daily Mail add that the former Southampton and Espanyol boss would hardly speak to his players by the end and would not let them question his methods. 

Some were "bored" of the same voice while others were frustrated that despite Pochettino wanting a clearout of those who weren't committed to the club, he continued to pick the likes of Christian Eriksen and Toby Alderweireld - both of whom have refused to sign new contracts. 

There has been an increasingly feeling among the supporters that the players have badly let down the man who transformed their careers. 

The Sun add that Daniel Levy hopes Pochettino's exit will convince Spurs' contact rebels to stay - though the board also felt he "engineered" his own sacking. 

This is a chairman who infamously sacked Martin Jol at half-time, but this feels a new level of cut-throat to a manager who displayed so much loyalty. 


GIVEMESPORT's Kat Lucas says: 

From his first interview, Pochettino promised to make the fans "proud of this football club". He did that and so much more. 

The football was exhilarating - pushing and running, hunting in packs. It was the 'Spurs way'. The 47-year-old knew exactly what it meant to walk in the footsteps of Bill Nicholson and Arthur Rowe. 

Suddenly, Tottenham find themselves having appointed the total antithesis of all their traditions and values.

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Levy has axed their most successful manager in 50 years and could still find himself having to replace Eriksen and Alderweireld, as well as Danny Rose and Jan Vertonghen. 

Mourinho does not do 'shoe-string'. Unless Levy is going to remarkably change a strategy which has seen him spend an average of just over £5million since he took charge in 2001, it is hard to envisage how this is going to work. And if there is money to spend, why on earth wasn't it given to Pochettino in the first place? 

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