Time for Jol to ignore pressure and just win, demands Levy

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The Independent Football

The Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy admits there is an "element of truth" behind concerns surrounding Martin Jol's future, but insists the Dutchman has the squad and boardroom backing for success.

Jol's position as manager at White Hart Lane has been uncertain after club officials met Seville coach Juande Ramos during Spurs' dismal start to the campaign, although Levy has since publicly backed the man he appointed in 2004.

Jose Mourinho was also linked with the job after leaving Chelsea, but Jol has remained defiant throughout the messy episode and has suggested even the "Special One" may not have matched his consecutive fifth-placed finishes in the last two campaigns.

Jol also believes getting rid of him would be a backward step for the club and feels the board have recognised his achievements by sticking with him after one win in seven Premier League games that has left them in the bottom three.

Levy, speaking to the Friday Football Show on Setanta Sports, said: "Obviously with any speculation sometimes there's an element of truth, but there has been a lot of stuff that's been written in the papers which has just been completely untrue."

Expectations of competing for a Champions League place came after spending more than £30m over the summer on Darren Bent, Younes Kaboul, Kevin-Prince Boateng and Gareth Bale. Jol is pleased with the progress of his young signings, but Spurs have yet to convince.

"I think it's inevitable with the quality of players we have in this squad that when we're not performing on the pitch there's bound to be speculation," added Levy. "I've made it very clear that I very much want Martin to succeed, Martin is fully aware of our ambition, he also has got ambition – he just needs to get the results. I think we're all fairly thick-skinned if I'm honest, I just think Martin and the players need to ignore the outside pressure and just win, and that's what it's all about."

Ledley King's absence as he recovers from knee surgery has contributed to Spurs' poor form, but Jol refuses to rush his skipper back. Jol does not want to set a comeback date for the defender, 26, after last season when the problems with his feet went on for longer than expected.

"He is progressing," said Jol. "I cannot push him. He is not doing everything. He is not doing the overloading, the one-v-ones, the sprints. He is doing the normal work."