Gareth Southgate is one of the latest names to be linked to the newly-vacant managerial post at Tottenham Hotspur…
According to the Guardian’s Dave Hytner, the England boss could emerge as a potential candidate after the European Championships this summer.
It’s claimed that the 50-year-old, who has only managed Middlesbrough briefly at domestic level, would like to return to the club game at some point and is only under contract at the Football Association until 2022.
There is a further suggestion that his involvement with Harry Kane could be a positive factor as the pair are said to have an excellent relationship.
What is most interesting, however, is the claim that Daniel Levy is plotting a move for an attack-minded manager after handing Jose Mourinho his marching orders following a tumultuous and negative few months in north London.
Hytner goes onto state that the Spurs chairman is ‘keen for the replacement to be modern in outlook and have strong credentials in the development of young players.’
Kind of in the mould of Mauricio Pochettino.
Southgate somewhat has the latter attribute on his side, having won the 2016 Toulon tournament with the Three Lions’ U21 side but in terms of attractive football, he doesn’t pass the test whatsoever and that could not only be counter-productive towards his desire to change the culture at Spurs, but too could put many more supporters off.
One game that emphasises the dull, drab football on offer under our country’s leading boss was that dreadful goalless draw with Denmark last year. That kind of epitomised his recent gameplan since World Cup heartache in 2018.
Three central defenders, two holding midfielders yet the team has plenty of attacking talent like Raheem Sterling, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho to accompany Kane.
“Negative and protective system” is how the BBC’s chief football writer Phil McNulty described it after the game, whilst Barney Ronay lambasted it a “tactical flaw and a turn-off for viewers” on the Guardian.
Not much has changed since, with England only just scraping past Poland in their most recent outing at the end of March.
On the above evidence alone, the appointment of Southgate in north London would be more Mourinho than Pochettino, and that should be enough to have Levy searching elsewhere.
If he were to appoint the former Palace and Villa defender, then he deserves every bit of criticism that would undoubtedly come his way.
AND in other news, this latest ESL update could spell trouble for Spurs and Kane…