Anyone who wants to hire Mauricio Pochettino before the start of the summer will need to work it out financially with Daniel Levy. That’s via an exclusive from Matt Law in the Telegraph, who said that Spurs’ chairman has put some teeth into Pochettino’s exit agreement.
Earlier reports had suggested that Poch would have to pay back the £12.5m he earned from Spurs as part of his agreement, but according to Law if he took another job before June he’d have to waive the remainder of his contract pay from Spurs, and the other club would need to negotiate appropriate compensation with Tottenham.
And it’s not just Premier League clubs — it applies to any club, including Bayern Munich who has been considering making an approach for Pochettino to replace Niko Kovac.
It’s another example of the strong-arm tactics that Levy likes to employ when dealing with not only players but others that come into contact with him regarding the business side of football. It’s not that Pochettino can’t sign with another club so soon after leaving Spurs, but if he does that club’s still going to pay through the nose to get him, and a lot of clubs simply aren’t willing to negotiate with Levy. It’s really just a way to make sure that he doesn’t end up coaching against Tottenham in the Premier League (or Champions League) this season, and it’s pretty effective.
For Pochettino’s sake, it doesn’t sound like he’s in a hurry to go anywhere. He has spent the past week back in Argentina, and was spotted attending a Newell’s Old Boys match, his old club. He broke his silence on his future yesterday in comments given to Fox Sports Argentina (via Evening Standard) and said he would like to manage again in Europe and while he’s taking his time he didn’t specifically rule out joining another club yet this season.
“There are a lot of clubs and attractive projects for me to take on, but for the time being, the most important thing is for me to clear my head after five-and-a-half incredible seasons with Tottenham. My aim is to seek the ability to rebuild myself and get my self-motivation back.
“It is my intention to return to manage in Europe. It is hard for me to imagine a project in Argentina. However for the sake of my family, I would not refuse to work over here. But now I need to be calm for a few days and see what happens. I haven’t had a lot of time to digest what has happened with me.
”My first decision was to come back to Argentina, return to my home and see family and friends. But I expect to return to Europe to make decisions on my future. My best decision was to come to Argentina to switch off for 10 days. At my age I don’t need a lot of time to recover. I am open to listen to projects put before me.”
It’s probably smart of Poch to leave all options open, but if what Law says about his exit agreement is true, it could get exceedingly difficult to switch to a new club in the short to medium term. More likely is he’ll get swept up in the managerial merry-go-round this summer.