Mauricio Pochettino has been heavily linked with a return to Tottenham Hotspur today, a story that has seemingly emerged from absolutely nowhere (The Athletic’s Jack Pitt-Brooke and Football.London’s Alasdair Gold).
As Spurs Web’s author Seb Jenkins writes, many Spurs fans were left upset when the Argentine was sacked back in November 2019 and even more so in hindsight considering the woes that have followed in North London.
18 months later and the magic man could be set up for a sensational return to the club he spent five and a half years at the helm of.
However, if you asked me whether I wanted Pochettino back in charge of Tottenham, my answer would be:
I am still of the opinion that Daniel Levy was right to sack Pochettino when he did. Despite the Champions League Final anomaly, Spurs had been on a downward spiral for the best part of a year.
To me, it seemed as though Pochettino was mentally fatigued and had checked out long before he was sacked. Similarly, many of the players were no longer fighting for him.
Not through the Argentine’s fault, the club had become a little stale after five and a half years, with an array of near misses sucking the motivation to go and do it all again.
In my opinion, Poch needed a change and Spurs needed a new head coach, even if Jose Mourinho didn’t turn out to be the solution.
So, would I want Pochettino back tomorrow?
The simple fact is that there is no point bring back the same manager to deal with the same problems. After all, the definition of insanity is to repeat the same thing over and over while expecting different results.
Pochettino fell short the first time and, under the same conditions, it is likely that he would fall short again.
This is where the ‘unless’ comes in. Unless the conditions under which he works can change.
If Daniel Levy agrees to give the Argentine more funding, more control over players, perhaps even a new Director of Football to work with, then I would be ecstatic to see him come back to North London.
However, I can’t stress enough that things do need to change.
Pochettino is not a man who will come in and save Spurs a load of money by doing a cute little rebuild again. Those times have passed. If you bring him back now, you bring him back for the next stage, to back him to win trophies.
That means an ambitious mindset, that means getting him the players he wants, that means putting a little more money behind him on a consistent basis even when the team are already performing well.
So yes, I would love Spurs to bring Poch back, but they also need to bring a new mentality and a new plan with that appointment.