Jamie Carragher names ideal Tottenham replacement for Conte, as Pochettino urged to steer clear of return at all costs
Jamie Carragher has explained why Mauricio Pochettino must avoid heading back to Tottenham as Antonio Conte’s managerial replacement, while also naming a far better alternative for the club.
According to a recent report from The Times, Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has decided on Pochettino as his number one target to succeed from Conte. This is because Levy already has a good relationship with the 51-year-old, he currently lives in England and is also keen to take charge.
On Thursday, The Athletic journalist David Ornstein revealed that Spurs will have to fend off Real Madrid to land Pochettino. The Spanish giants are looking at him as a potential replacement for Carlo Ancelotti.
However, Ornstein explained that Levy and Pochettino’s existing bond means Spurs must be considered frontrunners.
Fellow reporter Ben Jacobs has told TEAMtalk that Levy will ‘inevitably’ be thinking about what the club will look like without Conte. And Pochettino is currently ahead of ex-Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel on the list of possible candidates.
Carragher has now discussed Spurs’ change of manager which is due to take place at the end of the season. The pundit, writing in his column for The Telegraph, suggested Spurs should avoid Pochettino and go after impressive Brighton coach Roberto de Zerbi instead.
READ MORE: Tottenham players turn back on Conte with plea made to worthy successor, but Levy has alternative target in mind
“Now Spurs must look to the future with their replacement, seeking a coach who will deliver on Levy’s promise to play with the style supporters crave,” Carragher wrote. “When you see the impact of Roberto de Zerbi at Brighton, there are obvious echoes of Pochettino at Southampton: a young, hungry coach making an instant impact with an exciting brand of football.”
Carragher then addressed the talk of Pochettino heading back to the north London side.
Pochettino told ‘never go back’
“Never go back. That is what they say in football,” the former Liverpool defender added. “Mauricio Pochettino would be wise to remember that if he is tempted to return to Tottenham Hotspur. Don’t do it, Poch. All parties need to move on. Comebacks are usually more romantic than logical.
“The fact reappointing Pochettino is under consideration is a damning indictment on how Spurs have operated since he left. Going back would be an acknowledgement of the mistake sacking him. He would have to restart in north London, and every setback would inevitably lead to comparisons to when he initially took over.
“It is with a heavy heart that I cannot see how Pochettino can represent Tottenham’s future when he is a symbol of the ‘what might have been’ in the past.”
Carragher’s advice makes sense as Pochettino may struggle to get Spurs to compete as well as they did during his first spell. The squad is very different and is geared up for a different formation – involving three at the back – currently.
However, Levy will not see it that way. He looks set to put his trust in Pochettino due to the manager’s existing love for the club and the fact he already has experience managing in the Prem. It should not take Pochettino long at all to get used to life at Spurs again and potentially get the best out of some of their under-performing stars.
Meanwhile, Spurs are ‘hugely keen’ on a player starring in Germany, but they will have to beat Liverpool and Manchester City to his services.