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Tottenham break off talks with Gennaro Gattuso after fan backlash


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SSC Napoli v Udinese Calcio - Serie A Photo by MB Media/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur’s managerial search continues to be an utter disaster, but thanks to fan action they have prevented arguably a bigger one. Early Friday morning, news broke in multiple outlets including via David Ornstein at The Athletic that Spurs have broken off talks with former Napoli and Fiorentina manager Gennaro Gattuso.

Ornstein confirms that there had been talks between the club and Gattuso, but that he “would not be getting the job.” New Tottenham Managing Director of Football Fabio Paratici has apparently long been an admirer of Gattuso, and had considered appointing him as manager of Juventus during his time there.

This was a train that had been gathering steam all day Thursday after a bombshell report from Gianluca DiMarzio that said Spurs had abruptly pulled the plug on negotiations with Paulo Fonseca, who was widely tipped to accept the job. Backlash from Tottenham supporters on social media and the internet was immediate and fierce — Gattuso had a long reputation for hot-headedness dating back to his days as a player, and had made a number of distasteful remarks in the past about racism in Italy, the role of women in football, and gay marriage.

On Thursday afternoon and evening, a social media campaign spearheaded by The Extra Inch podcast (good friends of the blog) got the hashtag #NoToGattuso trending on Twitter in the United Kingdom. It is suggested that the fan uproar over the potential appointment was a significant factor on Spurs choosing to move on to other targets.

Make no mistake, this is still an absolute dumpster fire of a search process. Tottenham are now two months past the sacking of Jose Mourinho and the club does not appear to be any closer to a full time appointment. However, the consensus among supporters was that Gattuso was a terrible fit for the club, and to their credit the club again listened and backed away from what could have been another terrible decision.

Congratulations, fans. We did it.