In a move that caught many pundits and fans off guard, Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur sacked manager Mauricio Pochettino on Tuesday.
The decision has come after to a miserable start to the season for last season’s Champions League finalists.
And to add intrigue to the situation, Jose Mourinho (not so long ago the Manchester United manager and recently linked with the Arsenal job) is reportedly poised to replace the Argentine.
The former Chelsea manager is the favourite to take over with Sky Sports reporting that Spurs could close a deal with the Portuguese, who has been out of work since being sacked by United 11 months ago, as soon as Wednesday morning.
Spurs sit 14th in England’s top flight after picking up just three wins from their opening 12 games, and were eliminated from the League Cup in September by fourth-tier Colchester United.
“The club can today announce that Mauricio Pochettino and his coaching staff Jesus Perez, Miguel D’Agostino and Antoni Jimenez have been relieved of their duties,” Tottenham said in a statement.
“We were extremely reluctant to make this change and it is not a decision the board has taken lightly, nor in haste,” said Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy.
“Regrettably domestic results at the end of last season and beginning of this season have been extremely disappointing.
“It falls to the board to make the difficult decisions – this one made more so given the many memorable moments we have had with Mauricio and his coaching staff – but we do so in the club’s best interests.”
Pochettino, 47, transformed Spurs’ fortunes since arriving from Southampton in 2014 despite failing to win a trophy in his five-and-a-half years in charge.
During his five full seasons in charge, Tottenham qualified for the Champions League four times, culminating in a dramatic run to the club’s first ever European Cup final in June, which they lost 2-0 to Liverpool in Madrid.
However, domestically results have been on the decline since February, with Spurs clinging onto a top-four finish last season despite winning just three of their final 12 league games. That form has continued at the start of this season.
While some viewed this a decent decision, most Spurs fans were left gutted by the news on Twitter. And of course, there was humour involving the fact that Unai Emery has outlasted Pochettino at Arsenal.
Here are the reactions to the decision that has got every Premier League fan talking:
I love Poch I really do, but lets be honest here. He should have won something with the players we have— ʷAxel🇸🇪 (Fan account) (@ftblaxelV2) November 19, 2019
Mauricio Pochettino - Tottenham’s most successful manager since the 1960s:— Austin (@AustinDarbo) November 19, 2019
- 0 league titles
- 0 FA Cups
- 0 League Cups
- 0 Champions League
What a legacy, the next manager has big shoes to fill
It was nice of Pochettino to leave the Spurs trophy cabinet the same way he found it.— Stanley House 6️⃣ (@StanleyHouseLFC) November 19, 2019
Pochettino was the best thing to happen to Tottenham since the 1991 FA Cup final. Given he wanted the #mufc job and would’ve quit if they’d won the Champions League, this was always a matter of time. His Spurs side ultimately peaked in 2017.— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) November 19, 2019
Good luck to Tottenham on finding a manager that may outdo what Pochettino achieved. He may not have ‘won a trophy’ but he built a very good team that wasn’t too far away.— Jim Beglin (@jimbeglin) November 19, 2019
Mauricio Pochettino has been sacked by @SpursOfficial. He helped the club to punch massively above their weight for years. Good luck with finding a better replacement....ain’t gonna happen.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) November 19, 2019
4 - Tottenham Hotspur finished in the top four in four of their five previous completed seasons under Mauricio Pochettino, this after having finished in the top four in just two of their 22 Premier League campaigns before his arrival. Improved. pic.twitter.com/Ie8mo6MhNO— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) November 19, 2019
I feel gutted for Pochettino. He delivered Tottenham Champions League football four years out of five, guided us to a Champions League final and made us feel like Spurs were one of the great teams again. Lots of very special memories of this great man. I'll miss you! 💙⚽️ #COYSpic.twitter.com/jNiBEq3OUp— Chris Cowlin (@ChrisCowlin) November 19, 2019
One of the best tweets explaining why what Poch has achieved is much more important than winning a trophy. pic.twitter.com/XtJXwJ3sP3— LJohnson (@lazqetjohnson) November 20, 2019
I feel like sacking Poch is like dumping that girl that you know is low key too good for you. He exceeded expectations. Had us all excited for what #Spurs would do next. Will be interesting to see who else can do that or if it’ll just be regrets on regrets. #Pochettino— Alexis Nunes (@alexisenunes) November 20, 2019
So many calling me a Poch fan rather than a Spurs fan because I’m upset we sacked our best manager in decades.— Ryan (@ryangoIdy8) November 20, 2019
I obviously still want us to do well. I just feel like we’ve shot ourselves in the foot. And let a man who gave us so much joy down massively. It hurts
My official position on @SpursOfficial sacking Poch.— Arizona Hotspur (@ArizonaHotspur) November 20, 2019
This is the low point of my Spurs fandom. The only way it could go lower is if Levy hires a clown like Mourinho.
Never thought the day would come that I’d be up at midnight heartbroken bc poch got sacked...wow it just doesn’t seem real.— charlotte (@xcharlottethfc) November 19, 2019
Wow.— Lucy Jones (@thisislucy) November 19, 2019
I’m gutted. Absolutely gutted.
I had the best times of my life with #Poch in charge of our club.
I feel like I’ve broken up with my non-existent boyfriend.
Please can someone make me feel better about this?#COYS
For those criticising Poch for not winning trophies https://t.co/wtwtHDezdC— LJohnson (@lazqetjohnson) November 19, 2019
The best football years and memories of my life. I truly wish him all the success in the world, Thank you, Poch. #HesMagicpic.twitter.com/vBlPPIejVG— The Spurs Obsession (@SpursObsession) November 19, 2019
From the laughing stock to the Champions League Final.— Ashley Watts (@AshWatts93) November 19, 2019
From Top 4 hopefuls to top 4 regulars.
From No signings to No stadium, he challenged for the title.
Poch made us all believe again. He gave us memories to last a lifetime.
He’s Magic you know.
Thank You Poch🙏
Unai Emery and Ole Gunnar Solskjær realising Pochettino has been sacked yet they're still somehow employed 😂😂😂 pic.twitter.com/Zg774ZqKrJ— Footy Humour (@FootyHumour) November 19, 2019
Emery has outlasted Poch. Arsenal hierarchy has the weakest mentality. We aren’t ruthless enough, and I expect he will last the entire season with continued underperforming displays.— GoonerViews (@GoonerViews) November 19, 2019
If I were Arsenal I’d be all over getting Poch.— Georgie Bingham (@georgiebingham) November 19, 2019
Just imagine if we hire Pochettino. We would make Spurs laughing stock once again. Imagine if he wins us Europa in his first season after six trophyless years with them, we would literally extinguish Tottenham Hotspur FC lmaooo— Aubazettes (@Aubazettes) November 19, 2019
Mourinho to Spurs. Pochettino to Arsenal. Emery to West Ham. Let’s do this properly.— Tim Stillman (@Stillberto) November 19, 2019
Saving the best tweet for the last...
Pochettino sacked and inside sources have stated that they’re expected to have a replacement as early as this Friday. Rumours flying about as to who it is, but as just confirmed on Sky Sports, I can tell you.— Reev (@TheReevHD) November 19, 2019
It’s....... Rebekah Vardy.