Tottenham Hotspur

The candidates to replace Jose Mourinho at Tottenham - ranked

Robbie Copeland
Apr 26, 2021, 5:35 PM GMT+1
Jose has left the building
Jose has left the building | Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
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It's not very often that a Jose Mourinho sacking plays second fiddle on the football news cycle, but here we are.

On the same day that plans for a new Super League were announced, outlined, and panned across the board, Tottenham parting ways with their manager struggled to capture the attention. When the dust settles, though, it looks like a pretty big deal for the Premier League.

Not only is Mourinho back on the market to force his eye-bleeding brand of football on some new, unsuspecting club hell-bent on staying relevant, but Spurs are on the lookout for a new boss.

And while the job isn't as attractive as it was back when Mauricio Pochettino was given his marching orders, the club won't have to look far for good managers who want a crack at the whip.

We've taken a look at a few of the serious contenders, and ranked them on their suitability, as well as their chances of actually getting the job.

6. Rafa Benitez

Rafael Benitez last managed in the Premier League with Newcastle
Benitez last managed in the Premier League with Newcastle | Alex Broadway/Getty Images

If Spurs want an immediate appointment to come in and steady the ship, then they could do worse than Rafa Benitez. The Spaniard's stock is fairly low after a year in China, but the guy knows what he's doing and there are few better placed to immediately galvanise them in their bid to make Europe.

There are huge question marks over whether Spurs are prepared to make an interim appointment with just a handful of games left, or whether Benitez would be keen to take a job he has little chance of landing in the long-term.

But who knows? We've seen much stranger things.

Likelihood rating: 2/10
Suitability rating: 3/10

5. Diego Simeone

Simeone after Atletico Madrid's clash with Real Betis
Simeone is interested in the job | CRISTINA QUICLER/Getty Images

90min understands that Atletico Madrid boss Simeone is thought to be open to a new challenge next season, and has indicated he would be interested in Tottenham if the job opened up.

Well, Diego - your move.

The Argentine's authoritarian brand of management would take Mourinho's plans to toughen up the Spurs squad to a new level. Having spent ten years in Madrid, it's also easy to see why he might be fancying a new challenge.

Simeone could essentially take his pick of jobs if he were to leave, so may not jump at the chance to manage Spurs. It would be a sign of intent from Levy, albeit another risky one given his volatile personality.

Likelihood rating: 3/10
Suitability rating: 4/10

4. Max Allegri

FRANCE-FBL-ITA-CULTURE
Allegri is still one of Italian football's most respected managers | LUCAS BARIOULET/Getty Images

There are serious 'Mourinho' vibes about this one. The only difference is that Allegri is yet to taint his reputation as a top manager by tanking it at Manchester United.

The Italian has been out of management for two years now and has been heavily linked with a return to Juventus, who he left in 2019.

But he is one of the names on Spurs' radar, and if their focus is still winning things in the short-term, then there are few better for that than Allegri. He won five straight Serie A titles in Turin.

His availability on a free is also a major plus point.

Likelihood rating: 5/10
Suitability rating: 5/10

3. Nuno Espirito Santo

Nuno Espirito Santo in Wolves' match with Manchester City
Could Santo be heading to North London? | Alex Livesey/Getty Images

He may look like a character who gives you fetch quests in Skyrim, but Nuno Espirito Santo is one of the most exciting and tactically astute managers around in the Premier League.

Disappointing 2020/21 season aside, the fact that Wolves are now expected to compete for seventh is a testament to the work he has done.

He may have ambitions of taking them even further, but you get the feeling the next step isn't too far away for the 47-year-old. It could be argued Spurs aren't too much of a step up from Wolves at present, but the chance to work with superior players and greater resources has its appeal.

The big criticism would be that he's barely won anything, but neither had Pochettino when he took the reins.

Likelihood rating: 5/10
Suitability rating: 6/10

2. Steven Gerrard

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard beams after his team beat Celtic in the Scottish Cup
Gerrard beams after his side won another Old Firm Derby | Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Some will field the tiresome argument that the lack of Premier League titles in Steven Gerrard's trophy cabinet is a sign that he is not a winner. That, of course, ignores the fact that he's won literally everything else, now including a Scottish Premiership.

Overthrowing Celtic was never going to be easy, but given time by Rangers, Gerrard has done it in style. Their Glasgow rivals haven't been much cop this season, but even at their best, they would have struggled to get close to a Rangers team who have shipped just 11 goals in 34 league games so far.

Gerrard would have to take some convincing to leave Rangers now. He wants a crack at the Champions League in Ibrox, and in reality, only the Liverpool job may be able to turn his head.

But that shouldn't stop Spurs giving it a go.

Likelihood rating: 5/10
Suitability rating: 8/10

1. Brendan Rodgers

Brendan Rodgers during Leicester's clash with Southampton
"Who wants the Tottenham job?" | NEIL HALL/Getty Images

Mourinho's departure from Tottenham has been in the works for a while. Levy and the board have been considering their options for weeks, and 90min learned in March that Leicester boss Rodgers was their favourite to take over.

It makes sense from all angles. A high-performing manager with a history of winning trophies, but still rebuilding his reputation after failing to win the league with Liverpool.

Leicester will undoubtedly put up a fight if there is an approach from a Premier League rival. And given they may well be in the Champions League next season, they could approach negotiations from a strong position.

Spurs are the sort of club Rodgers will have to join one day if he wants to make it back to a truly elite level, however. If he could rebuild them into what they were under Mauricio Pochettino - and maybe take them a shade beyond that - then it benefits everyone.

Likelihood rating: 6/10
Suitability rating: 9/10

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