Just a few hours after officially becoming part of the plan to create a European Super League, Tottenham announced the sacking of their manager, Jose Mourinho.
Mourinho lasted 17 months at Spurs, where he guided the club to a sixth-place finish last season and a League Cup final in the current campaign. The loss of identity in Tottenham’s game, as well as a lack of progress from the players, were the two main reasons behind chairman Daniel Levy’s decision to let Mourinho go. The former Real Madrid, Chelsea, and Manchester United manager leaves trophyless from a club for the first time in 19 years. Tottenham could lift the League Cup on April 25 when they face Manchester City at London’s iconic Wembley Stadium. It would come as a shock, as bookies have them at +550, with City at -200.
Mourinho was appointed in November 2019 to replace Mauricio Pochettino. Tottenham is currently seventh in the Premier League.
Thank you for everything Boss. A pleasure to have worked together. I wish you all the best for your next chapter. pic.twitter.com/n3MLECMdC1
— Harry Kane (@HKane) April 19, 2021
“Jose and his staff have been with us through some of our most challenging times as a club,” Levy said in a club statement. “Mourinho is a true professional and he showed enormous resilience during the pandemic. On a personal level, I have enjoyed working with him and regret that things have not worked out as we both had envisaged.”
The 2020-2021 season is the first in Mourinho’s entire career in which he lost 10 times during a single season. Mourinho’s last result as Tottenham’s manager was a 2-2 away draw against Everton. Mourinho will be temporarily replaced by former Spurs midfielder Ryan Mason, who has been working in the club’s academy.
Why was Mourinho fired now?
With just a few days remaining until the FA Cup final, Levy believes Tottenham has a higher chance of beating Manchester City with a fresh impulse coming in from the bench. After Tottenham built its futuristic training facilities and glamorous new stadium that cost more than $1.4 billion, Levy hired Mourinho to guide the club back to its winning ways.
Tottenham last won the English league in 1961, the Cup in 1991, and the League Cup in 2008. Levy saw the opportunity in hiring Mourinho, even if that meant Tottenham saying their goodbyes to Mauricio Pochettino, the man who took Spurs into the final of the Champions League just months before being shown the door.
Mourinho, 58, was previously sacked by Chelsea and Manchester United, but for Levy, that was no concern. By deciding to drop him now, the Tottenham boss is basically admitting that he was wrong in hiring Mourinho in the first place.
According to The Athletic, Tottenham’s players had many complaints regarding Mourinho, from the lack of intensity in training to his public statements criticizing them and his constant focus on the team’s defensive game.
“He sucked the culture out of the club,” a source inside Tottenham’s locker room told the website.
Mourinho won just 51% of his games at Tottenham in all competitions (44 from 86), his worst percentage since Leiria almost 20 years ago. In the Premier League alone, Tottenham won 27 games (out of 58) under Mourinho, drawing 14 times and losing 17.
Tottenham will pay Mourinho a compensation fee worth $22.5 million, taking his career total earnings after sackings to a staggering $112 million.
As is with all Tottenham managers contracts Jose Mourinho will remain on the payroll but on gardening leave. He will lose any compensation on taking a position. Compo approx 16 million.
— Paul O Keefe (@pokeefe1) April 19, 2021
What the future holds for Tottenham and Mourinho
Bookies have Bayern-target Julian Nagelsmann as their favorite to replace “The Special One” at Tottenham. Spurs will have to pay $24 million to get him out of his contract with RB Leipzig, and also beat Bayern’s interest. Nagelsmann is at +450 to follow Mourinho into the Spurs’ dugout. Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers is at +600, with club legend Ledley King at +1000. Former Juventus coach Max Allegri is at +1100 and Glasgow Rangers boss Steven Gerrard at +1300. Wolves’ Portuguese coach, Nuno Espirito Santo, is also among the names recently mentioned by the English media as a possible target for Tottenham. He’s at +1500.
Mourinho is still a man in demand on the European stage. Bookies have him at +700 to become Ronaldo’s new coach at Juventus. A return to Porto is priced at +900, while a job with the Portuguese national team after the Euro finals in the summer is at +650.