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Our former managers want you to know how smart they are

Bryn Lennon

You all remember Harry Redknapp and Martin Jol, yes? The two former Tottenham Hotspur managers who everyone thought were very harshly fired, then went on to not succeed at all in the jobs they took on after leaving the club? Well, they want you to know how amazing they are.

In Redknapp's case, this is nothing new. He's probably the king of own-horn-tooting. There are some excerpts from his book at the Daily Mail, and oh boy, does he want you to know about how much he wanted

Despite all that has happened in his career since, one of the biggest regrets of my life in management is not taking Luis Suarez to Tottenham when we had the chance.

‘You've got to take him, Harry,' Ruud Gullit told me. ‘He's fantastic.'

As you know, Spurs didn't sign Suarez. But it was his scouts' fault! They told him that Suarez was a winger, so he didn't sign him. So he was only going to sign Suarez because Gullit sang his praises, and didn't fight his scouts when they said he's not a center forward. But marvel at his genius anyway.

Know who else Harry almost signed? Patrick Vieira! And at the risk of getting all kinds of abuse from Spurs fans, he sounds like a really cool guy.

I met him at his house in Hampstead and he had no fear about what people would think or what reception he would get. He had enough confidence in his ability to just brush it away.

I remember talking to Daniel Levy, our chairman, about him. He said the crowd would be hostile. I knew that - but if he had enough bottle to want to put on our white shirt after all that had gone before, I thought it said something about the man.

But ... he stayed at Inter. And then when he left, City snapped him up. So, another world class player that Harry almost signed, but didn't.

We're used to this kind of stuff from Harry, but Jol tooting his own horn for players he almost signed is certainly a new one. Here's what he had to say about almost signing Gareth Bale when he moved on to Hamburg, from Sky Sports.

"Spurs saw Bale as a left-back, but he probably wasn't the best left-back in the world.

He was more creative, he had electric pace, so everybody saw that he was more suited as a forward player, and Harry Redknapp saw that later on.

I saw his potential straight away, but other people didn't see that in the early stages of his career and that led to Spurs offering Bale to me when I went to Hamburg."

No one knew how good Gareth Bale really was ... except Jol! He knew! He knew all along! Let's forget that Jol was reportedly unhappy with Damien Comolli's signings that summer and didn't play Bale in an advanced position at all before he got fired.

The lesson: Every average manager in football is exceptional at obnoxious self-aggrandizing.