Tottenham manager latest: Mauricio Pochettino open to talks, but may face £2m bill if he quits Southampton - reports

The Argentine is emerging as the front-runner to replace Tim Sherwood

Simon Rice
Wednesday 14 May 2014 15:39

Following yesterday's announcement that Tottenham have decided to dispense with Tim Sherwood, attention has turned to finding a replacement.

Mauricio Pochettino and Frank de Boer are the pair most strongly linked with the vacancy at White Hart Lane.

Ajax manager De Boer has already indicated he would be interested in talking with Spurs and after winning four Eredivisie titles in a row his credentials are as high as they are likely to be as long as he remains in the Netherlands.

"Spurs have made an approach," the former Barcelona and Rangers player said at the end of last month. "I'm going to listen and talk. Then I'll make my feelings known."

But it is Southampton manager Pochettino who is emerging as the front runner and reports today suggest the Argentine is open to an approach.

Pochettino has been coy over his future at St Mary's but his position on the south coast has always seemed unstable since the departure of executive chairman Nicola Cortese, the man who brought him to the club, midway through the season.

"It's up to the board to discuss with me the new project that will be in place for next season," Pochettino, who has one-year remaining on his contract, said last week. "It's not up to me to decide when those talks will happen."

To counteract interest in their manager, Southampton are understood to be in talks to persuade the former Espanyol coach to stay. However, the likely departures of Luke Shaw and Adam Lallana this summer may weaken their position.

Yet if Pochettino leaves St Mary's, according to the Telegraph he personally faces paying Southampton £2m in compensation. While a signing-on fee of similar value may be able to be agreed with Spurs, it could complicate any move.

Tottenham's interest in Pochettino will come as little surprise with the 42-year-old impressing since replacing Nigel Adkins at the club, particularly in establishing some of Southampton's emerging talents such as Shaw. Saints finished eighth in the Premier League.

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