Louis van Gaal is said to be willing to work with the current Tottenham squad should he be appointed as Spurs’ manager in the summer.
The Dutchman is the favourite to replace current manager Tim Sherwood in the summer, with widespread reports claiming that chairman Daniel Levy has already decided to sack the former Spurs midfielder at the end of the season. With Van Gaal set to leave his role as Holland national coach following the World Cup, Spurs have been linked with making an approach for the 62-year-old, who has in turn given assurances that he will not require a big transfer budget to mould the team he wants.
The Evening Standard reports that Van Gaal met Levy back in December when Andre Villas-Boas was dismissed, and while there is interest in his services from Spartak Moscow as well as his own desire to keep an eye on matters at Manchester United, Spurs remain the favourite in terms of his next role.
Who could replace Tim Sherwood as Tottenham manager?
Who could replace Tim Sherwood as Tottenham manager?
1/11 Frank de Boer
Hugely respected former Ajax and Barcelona player Frank de Boer looks to have taken well to management having won the Eredivisie the last four years running. As respected as it is, Ajax has a tendency to be a stepping stone on to bigger things. So is Spurs big enough? The Dutchman has been strongly linked and in return he has suggested he would be keen.
2/11 Mauricio Pochettino
When Southampton appointed Pochettino it came as a shock. Few knew much more about him than he once tripped Michael Owen in the box when England met Argentina at the 2002 World Cup. Since then, he's shown himself to be a more than adept manager in the Premier League, making the most of the youthful team he found at St Mary's and instilling an ambition in the club few realised they were capable of. Since the departure of executive chairman Nicolas Cortese, the man who brought Pochettino to the club, there have been question marks over his future.
3/11 Glenn Hoddle
Glenn Hoddle was a fans favourite at White Hart Lane and has previously managed the North London club. The former England manager has been out of work since leaving his role as Wolverhampton Wanderers boss in 2006 and has openly expressed his desire to manage Tottenham Hotspur once again. He wasn't shy of criticising Sherwood either.
4/11 Jurgen Klinsmann
A Tottenham legend, Jurgen Klinsmann lit up the Premier League during his spell at White Hart Lane. Many Spurs fans will have fond memories of the German genius during his time in North London and would love to see the current United States national team boss make a return to the Lane.
5/11 Justin Edinburgh
Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Justin Edinburgh has worked wonders with League Two Newport County during his two-and-a-bit-years with the South Wales club. He joined the Exiles in 2011 and went on to win the Conference Premier play-offs the season after. Could he be a surprise candidate for the White Hart Lane hot seat?
6/11 Jupp Heynckes
The veteran German manager, who was named Fifa coach of the year in January, has been out of work since leaving Bayern Munich in May. In his last season at the German giants he won the Bundesliga, German Cup and the Champions League. He is currently retired but could the opportunity to manage Tottenham Hotspur draw him out of his armchair?
7/11 Sean Dyche
After being unceremoniously sacked by Watford, Sean Dyche has reinvented himself at Championship side Burnley. Dubbed the 'Ginger Mourinho' by the Turf Moor crowd, Dyche is a manager whose stock is rising, with his Clarets side having been promoted to the Premier League for next season.
8/11 Diego Simeone
Diego Simeone has taken to management like a duck to water, although the British public may not be his biggest fans, after the Argentinian was responsible for getting David Beckham sent-off at the 1998 World Cup in France. His record in Spain since taking over Atletico Madrid has been incredibly impressive with his side in contention for the La Liga title as well as reaching the lChampions League final. Might be difficult for Spurs to convince him to switch.
9/11 Michael Laudrup
The Dane has been out of work since being sacked by Swansea City over e-mail in February. During his time in Wales he led the Swans to their first trophy in their 102-year history as well as getting them to play some of leagues most attractive football.
10/11 Eddie Howe
Eddie Howe's name being thrown into the mix for the Tottenham manager's job could come as a surprise to the fans, but he is a manager that has impressed this season in the Championship. After a successful period at Bournemouth, he left for Burnley, his time at Turf Moor wasn't the best, but since returning to the Cherries he has got them playing an attractive style of football and up to 12th in the Championship.
11/11 David Moyes
Before he was 'chosen' to manage Manchester United, Moyes was linked with Spurs. Having been sacked after less than 10 months in charge of Manchester United, White Hart Lane could provide a quick return to management. His record prior to his latest job is excellent - after all - United thought he was good enough to replace Sir Alex.
Clearly, the United job would be more attractive than the one at Spurs because of the greater prestige and potential of the club, as well as the history of domestic and European success. Yet unless matters deteriorate dramatically over the remainder of the campaign, Moyes should still keep his post.
If he does come to Spurs, it is understood that Van Gaal would not seek to effect sweeping changes, as he believes strongly that his coaching methods are sound enough to improve most players, especially young ones.
This standpoint contrasts with that of Sherwood, who would be keen to overhaul the current squad should he retain the faith of Levy beyond the end of the current campaign. Of the seven signings made last summer, at a cost of more than £100million, Sherwood rates only one – Christian Eriksen – highly. He is thought to be willing to ship out the other six, as well as Lewis Holtby, and replace them with players who have more experience of the Premier League.
Van Gaal’s preference would be more to develop the current group, with particular focus on young footballers. Unlike other top-level managers, Van Gaal distrusts expensive, high-profile signings, preferring to work with men who are more receptive to his ideas. Daley Blind, the 24-year-old Ajax defender, is a potential signing if Van Gaal does take over at Spurs.
The Dutchman is proud of his track record of working with less experienced players, having led a youthful Ajax side to the Champions League title in 1995.
He also handed first-team debuts to Xavi and Andres Iniesta at Barcelona, and Thomas Muller and Holger Badstuber at Bayern Munich. The first three are now stars of the world game.
He is keen for young players to have inquiring minds, and some of those he developed at Ajax, including Frank de Boer, Clarence Seedorf, Ronald de Boer and Danny Blind, have moved into coaching after retirement.
Van Gaal is also committed to positive, attacking football, placing great emphasis on entertainment, rather than just securing useful results.
When Van Gaal makes his next move, his assistant is likely to be someone with significant experience of that club. It is understood that he will also seek to bring with him some or all of goalkeeping coach Frans Hoek, technical expert Andries Jonker and forwards coach Patrick Kluivert, the former Holland striker.
It would be particularly difficult to hire Jonker, though, as he accepted the chance to succeed Liam Brady as Arsenal’s academy director, and he is due to start his new job on July 1.
Meanwhile, Jan Vertonghen could miss Monday’s home game with Sunderland due to the ankle injury sustained against Liverpool, but the problem is not thought to be too serious.
The defender limped off during the first half of the 4-0 defeat at Anfield. He has now had a scan and should recover to play a part in the run-in, as well as Belgium’s World Cup campaign.
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