Napoli president Aurelio De Laurentiis has confirmed Luis Enrique has rejected the club “because he wants to go to the Premier League” amid Tottenham interest.
The situation at Spurs will require a top manager to sort it out. Indeed, in the seven seasons before the recently-concluded campaign, they’d finished outside the top four just twice.
This season saw them not only finish outside the top four, but outside the top seven. It’s the first time the north London outfit has finished a season that low since 2008/09.
Three managers took control of the club this term. After ties were cut with Antonio Conte following a sensational rant on his own players, his assistant Cristian Stellini took charge on a caretaker basis.
After four games, which included two losses, a win and a draw, Stellini was sent packing. Ryan Mason took control for the remainder of the season, as Spurs slumped outside of the European football places.
Getting back into the upper echelons of the league seems tough. Indeed, there are some strong sides above Tottenham, who showed their quality this season.
Daniel Levy will want to ensure the manager he hires can do the job required. So far, though, it’s been difficult for Spurs to convince anybody to lead the project.
When it was confirmed Arne Slot would remain with Feyenoord, he was added to a list of managers to have decided against taking the Spurs job, including: Xabi Alonso, Julian Nagelsmann and Vincent Kompany.
Enrique to Tottenham on as boss turns down Napoli
It was suggested when Slot rejected advances that former Spain boss Enrique could come back into the frame. Indeed, reports stated there could be a ‘fresh approach’ for him.
Since then, he’s spoken to Napoli about their vacant manager’s role, with Luciano Spalletti to take a sabbatical. Enrique has apparently rejected the Italian side, and the reasons given by president De Laurentiis could point to a Tottenham move.
“Luis Enrique wants to go to the Premier, we compete with championships that are more attractive than ours,” he said, quoted by Cadena Ser.
Indeed, Tottenham could now be in the driver’s seat. It’s a big statement for a coach to turn down a side who have just won their league’s title.
That’s especially true given the quality of the coach. Indeed, for a manager of his calibre, a job at a club that isn’t a ‘big-six’ side seems unlikely.
The only club with a vacancy in that group is Tottenham, after Chelsea appointed Mauricio Pochettino.
Enrique will be well aware of the job openings in the Premier League. As such, that he’s still interested in making the move to an English side suggests he would have no problems taking the Tottenham job.
Enrique a huge appointment for Spurs
If they do land him, Spurs would be making a huge appointment in Enrique. The former Barcelona boss won a Champions League and three La Liga titles during his time at Camp Nou.
Of course, that was with a squad with a lot of quality in it.
Tottenham don’t have the masses of quality that Barcelona possess. As such, Levy would have to give him the resources he requires to make the squad competitive.
There’s no question Enrique would be able to create a very good side if allowed.