Is the Special One on borrowed time at Spurs?

By Mariah Ramharack April 18, 2021

On many a Sunday, I realize that people have looked at the stories they have seen throughout the week with different lenses. I have my own personal take on some of these trending issues and I will share them with you. Welcome to #INCASEYOUMISSEDIT the 2021 edition with Mariah.

Jose Mourinho on borrowed time

Tottenham Hotspur has been struggling in the Premier League and there is speculation Jose Mourinho’s days at the club are numbered. Their 20/21 season has been atrocious and looks likely to miss out on Champions League qualification for a second consecutive season, having previously played in the competition four times in a row.

With six games left in the Premier League, Spurs are five points off fourth-placed West Ham. The team’s decline has been evident after its 3-1 defeat at home to Liverpool on January 28. They have lost seven of the following 14 Premier League games after that, they won five matches and drew two, conceding 21 goals, one less than they scored.

To make matters worse, Mourinho’s side exited the FA Cup in the fifth round with defeat at Everton and then collapsed in Croatia throwing away a 2-0 first-leg lead to lose 3-2 on aggregate at Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League.

What is clear is that Mourinho is failing to get the best out of his players. When asked about his team’s poor run his response, “Same coach, different players”, suggests that there is also discontent in the dressing room.

Paul Pogba, who was Mourinho’s world-record marquee signing following his 2016 appointment at Old Trafford accused the former Manchester United manager of casting players, including himself, aside without explanation.

Former English footballer Danny Mills claimed that Jose Mourinho is preoccupied with protecting Tottenham’s backline and it has affected his selection decisions farther up the pitch.

 “Mourinho has continued to chop and change his centre-back partnerships over the last few months, with all of Tottenham’s centre-halves being guilty of some poor mistakes at the back,” Mills opined.

As of now, it seems the Special One is not that special anymore.

 

Time for Harry Kane to win a Premier League title

Despite Tottenham Hotspur’s woes Harry Kane continues to stand out for his club. He is currently the leading goal scorer for the Premier League but is yet to win a title. He’s now scored 20 or more league goals in five different seasons, a feat accomplished only by Alan Shearer, Sergio Aguero and Thierry Henry.

 Despite his productivity, it is unlikely that Kane will win a title at Spurs. They are not going to make the Champions League next season and nobody knows for sure what the future holds.

At age 28, Kane must make the move before it is too late. There will be clubs interested in signing him including the likes of Manchester United and Manchester City, both good options.

  Manchester United needs a Europa League win

Manchester United is set to face Roma and is favourite to win the Europa League given the quality of their opponents and their form at this point in the season. United beat Granada 2-0 at Old Trafford on Thursday to complete a 4-0 aggregate success and set up a semi-final against Roma, who edged Ajax 3-2 on aggregate and are outsiders to lift the trophy.

United have not lifted silverware since 2017 but can end that drought if they are successful in the Europa League this season. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is hoping to make it fifth-time lucky after United fell short in four semi-finals across last season and this.

United beat Ajax in the 2017-final in Sweden and to many, they are a better side now than they were then and have shown consistently this season that they have what it takes this season to beat some of the top teams in Europe.

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    Ten Hag's future was subject to speculation throughout a largely dismal season for United, who recorded their lowest ever Premier League finish of eighth. 

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    However, they finished an underwhelming campaign on a high note on Saturday, with Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo scoring in a shock 2-1 FA Cup final victory over Manchester City.

    Yorke says Ten Hag deserves credit for the way he set United up at Wembley Stadium, as the Red Devils edged City for expected goals (1.59 xG to 1.35), shots on target (five to four) and big chances (two to one) despite only having 26.4 per cent of the possession.

    "I think everybody thought this United team was never going to get the result. And for us, who have been in football for such a long time, the unthinkable can happen occasionally," Yorke told Stats Perform.

    "I have to say, Ten Hag deserves a lot of credit. There's a lot of noise coming out from the United end about whether he was going to be the manager. 

    "After the end of this game, whether he won or lost, he had the players focused. I think this could arguably be United's best performance this season. I really do. 

    "There were a lot of negatives coming out of the camp, but I truly think they were far superior tactically. The way we set up and made life very difficult for them [City]. 

    "They were in City's face, not allowing them too much space to dominate the game. I thought they were superb. The manager deserves a lot of credit and the players deserve a lot of credit for showing up on a day when no one gave them a chance to win the game."

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    "Whether he's the man taking us forward in terms of his style, that's another question, but he certainly deserves another year in my opinion."

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    The former Ajax coach subsequently cut short his press conference when it was put to him by a journalist that United, who finished eighth in the Premier League, were still way behind where they should be.

    "Sorry to say this, but you don't have any knowledge about football, about managing a football team," Ten Hag said. "When you don't have the players available, then you can't perform, so simple as that.

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    "Winning the FA Cup is important for them like last season it was for us."

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    "We will rest and come back next season."

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