Antonio Conte became the 11th Premier League manager to be dismissed when Tottenham Hotspur confirmed his sack on Sunday.
It had been highly anticipated following an uncouth post-match rant where he dragged the club and his players through the mud.
The Italian was asking to be sacked and the long-awaited axe has finally fallen, meaning Tottenham can now move forward with plans for a new manager.
Cristian Stellini has been appointed interim boss until the end of the season, but there are questions on whether the 48-year-old is tactically sound enough to meet Spurs’ lofty targets or just a Conte regen.
Stellini’s managerial experience, aside from temporarily replacing Conte when the Italian was hospitalised following gall bladder surgery, amounts to a short spell in the third tier of Italian football.
Stellini’s record during the interim Spurs spell was nothing short of impressive, but the club should be looking towards a title-winning manager to execute their expectations.
Most such managers already have various commitments, which begs the question, who should take the job in the summer? Let’s look at five head coaches Tottenham should consider in their managerial search.
Roberto De Zerbi
Roberto De Zerbi is already one of the coveted managers in the Premier League following an exceptional debut campaign as Brighton & Hove Albion boss.
Having replaced Graham Potter earlier this season, the former Sassuolo head coach has got the Seagulls faithful fantasising over a fairytale European finish to their stellar campaign.
Averaging 1.76 points per match (PPM) this season, Brighton sit seven points behind fourth-placed Tottenham with three games in hand.
De Zerbi has just two trophies to his name, but his work at Brighton shows how tactically sound and success oriented the 43-year-old is, and Spurs should be working round the clock to try and snatch him from Brighton’s claws, however difficult a task it may seem.
Having been recently dismissed by Bayern Munich, it comes as no surprise that the German tactician is on the radar of the north Londoners.
Julian Nagelsmann’s work at RB Leipzig was a testament to his tactical acumen, which earned him a move to the German champions in the first place.
The 35-year-old led Die Roten to the Bundesliga title in his debut season while winning the German Super Cup twice, and left Bayern still competing for every major silverware available.
Before being dismissed, Nagelsmann had coached 25 games and won 15 while drawing seven and losing just three times. His side also scored 72 goals (an average of 2.88 goals per game) while conceding just 27 times.
The former Hoffenheim manager is highly regarded amongst his peers, but breezing through the Champions League group stages before swatting aside Paris Saint-Germain in the round of 16 should be all the interview Spurs need to snap him up.
An emotional return for Mauricio Pochettino could also be on the cards, and the former Paris Saint-Germain man has made it clear he would relish a second crack at Spurs.
Pochettino coached Tottenham between July 2014 and November 2019 in a five-and-a-half-year stint riddled with near misses, notably the 2019 Champions League final, which they lost to Liverpool.
Despite winning nothing at Spurs, the Argentine manager enjoyed a trophy-laden year-and-a-half with PSG at Parc des Princes, where he won the Ligue 1 title, the French Cup, and Super Cup.
His only mishap was not being able to deliver Champions League silverware which the club so desperately craved, but his new-found winning mentality could come in handy if Spurs decide to bring him back.
Whether he can whip a trophy-winning mentality into the current crop of Spurs players is another question entirely, with the team barely hanging on to fourth place as it is.
Ruben Amorim is considered one of the best Portuguese coaches around with his stylish, easy-on-the-eye brand of football.
Since joining Sporting CP in March 2020, the former Braga manager has averaged 2.20 PPM across 148 games, winning the Portuguese League, the League Cup (x2) and the Super Cup.
Amorim’s side faced Spurs in the Champions League group stage, and he coached his side to a win and a draw over their two-legged encounter.
But he did not stop there as his Sporting side also dumped Premier League leaders Arsenal out of the Europa League to reach the quarter-final.
Although his side have been underwhelming in the Primeira Liga this season, Amorim would fit Tottenham like a glove and represent a fresh start, an attractive style of football and a chance to lift the club again.
Another one of Portugal’s finest, Sergio Conceicao has revolutionised Porto’s style of play since joining the Dragons in the summer of 2017.
Conceicao has won every domestic trophy available since arriving at the Estadio do Dragao, with a minimal transfer budget.
His side did well to qualify top of their Champions League group ahead of Club Brugge, Bayer Leverkusen, and Atletico Madrid, but their European journey ended in a slender defeat to Inter Milan at the last 16 stage.
The 48-year-old has already been tipped to join one of the bigger teams in Serie A, but Spurs should be pulling out all the stops to take him to north London.
The former Nantes head coach has averaged 2.30 PPM, having managed 314 games, and is another manager who could prove a terrific fit at Tottenham.
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