End of an era

To paraphrase Sir Alex Ferguson, the maximum you can drive the same group of players is four seasons, after that either the players have to change or the manager does.


Sir Alex was the master of reinventing his teams, brave enough to move on players who he felt had reached their peak or who were no longer able or willing to take on his messages. Crucially he had the backing of his Board and David Gill to execute on that philosophy.

If only Mauricio Pochettino had been afforded the same support. Sadly, the man who had earned the right to become Tottenham’s Sir Alex and who had called for the Club to ‘be brave’ was not backed - and now, inevitably he has been sacked.

In his place, the polar opposite character and football philosophy. From warmth and unity the club will move to ruthless practicality. From long-term vision and building a legacy the new man will execute his usual three-year plan which sacrifices all for the sake of silverware.

No doubt there will be many outside the club who will think that’s just what Spurs need. A man to take the Club up the final step. But Spurs has always been more than that, it stands for an ideal. The way of doing things perhaps more important even than the ultimate prizes. The club motto is Audere Est Facere, To Dare is to Do. Over these past five-and-a-half years under Pochettino the Club have Dared in abundance..... and thrilled and given us supporters moments we scarcely dreamed of - made all the sweeter being as it was, orchestrated by a kind, warm man, a man and his staff who genuinely seemed to ‘get’ what it meant to be a Spur.

He just got us and our ‘doing things with style’ and we got him. It is utterly heartbreaking that his time in charge did not yield a notch on the honours board. It will be even more so when he achieves that success elsewhere, hopefully not too close to home. 

And so, the second part of the Club motto - the Doing, that task falls to Jose Mourinho. His track record speaks for itself both in the results achieved and the method of doing so. And also the trail of destruction he leaves behind. 

It is an odd move for both Chairman and new manager. History would suggest that Jose excels when he’s given total control and a hefty budget. Neither of which is likely to happen under Daniel Levy.

It feels like a total mismatch off the pitch and equally ill fitting on the pitch too where the recent past would suggest a footballing philosophy based on ruthless pragmatism rather than the youthful exuberance of the first 5 years of the Pochettino era.

It may all end up fine, with a revitalised Mourinho embracing the culture of the club and procuring success at the same time. But today, it just feels like a terribly sad end to the era of a special man who made us fall back in love with our club. For us he is and will always be, magic.

In sacking Pochettino and appointing Mourinho, Daniel Levy displayed outrageous chutzpah

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