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Postecoglu rejected Brighton, Wolves, and Southampton before joining Tottenham

Big Ange had options, and decided not to leave Celtic in the lurch. That worked out great for Tottenham.

Celtic v Inverness Caledonian Thistle: Scottish Cup Final Photo by Richard Sellers/Sportsphoto/Allstar via Getty Images

It’s not just the British media that’s writing about new Tottenham Hotspur head coach Ange Postecoglou. The Australian sports media is also very invested in his success — and for good reason! Big Ange is the first Aussie coach to ever manage a club in the Premier League, so it’s good not only for him but for his adopted country.

Today there’s a big piece in Australian outlet KEEPUP that reveals that Postecoglu had attracted interest from not just Spurs, but three other Premier League clubs over the past year — Brighton, Wolves and Southampton.

Brighton we knew about. That was reported once it had emerged that Spurs were showing serious interest in Big Ange a couple of weeks ago. However, the Wolves and Soton interest were new to me. It’s not surprising in the least — Southampton were desperate to do whatever it took to stay in the Premier League and believed Postecoglou could do a reclamation job. Wolves also had Ange on a list after the club sacked Bruno Lage in October, before ultimately appointing Julen Lopetegui.

Both times, it’s stated, Postecoglou turned down approaches not because he didn’t want to manage in the Premier League — the article is explicitly clear that he did — but because he didn’t want to leave Celtic in the lurch while they were having an exceptional season. Postecoglou also was convinced that he had a much greater chance of success if he joined a team in the offseason as opposed to midway through the year when there was significantly more pressure to succeed and not as much time to train on his tactical ideas. It was the right call — Celtic won the treble this past season and he was able to land a job (Tottenham) that was of a higher profile (if not just a better job, sorry Brighton).

The article goes into a great amount of detail on Postecoglu’s path from the Socceroos to England, and is worth a read. Ange was always near, if not at, the top of Tottenham’s list and that he was one of the three finalists along with Arne Slot and Luis Enrique. Big Ange gave a lot of credit to his Australian agent Frank Trimboli, who put an incredible amount of work in behind the scenes to get Ange his desired move to England.

It’s a great story, and it has paid personal dividends, but obviously the proof is what Postecoglou can do on the pitch. But the media, both in the UK and Down Under, seems universally smitten with Big Ange, and the coverage seems to be a consensus that this could be a hugely important and exciting appointment for Spurs.