Tottenham: Pochettino says his dream is to return to club
Mauricio Pochettino is the hot favourite for the PSG job in the aftermath of Thomas Tuchel’s sacking – and the Argentine has longed dreamed of managing his former club. Sporting director Leonardo has finally pulled the trigger on Tuchel, just four months after guiding the French giants to the Champions League final where they eventually fell short at the hands of Bayern Munich in Lisbon.
Tuchel never looked like the man capable of delivering the ultimate prize for PSG – their first European Cup – yet no one has come closer to touching gold.
Much like Pochettino at Tottenham, the European adventure was not enough to save him from the axe with PSG now ready to make their move for their former defender once they have finished negotiating with the German’s lawyers.
The timing was ruthless from the Parc des Princes hierarchy but with PSG now in a genuine title race for the first time in years, the club are not prepared to take any chances as Lille and Lyon smell blood.
Tuchel reportedly received his fate after the 4-0 demolition of Strasbourg last night and his successor will now have until January 6 to prepare the side to face Saint-Etienne ahead of the second half of the campaign.
Pochettino has been patiently waiting in the wings for his next project since November 2019 and has previously made it clear it would be his dream to return to Paris, where he spent two years as a player between 2001 and 2003.
TOP STORY: PSG sack Thomas Tuchel
Mauricio Pochettino has said it’s his dream to manage PSG
He previously told RMC in 2016: “I have always said that one day it would be a pleasure to manage a big club like Paris, a dream.
“I try to watch all of their games, especially in the Champions League and sometimes I speak with [former PSG assistant coach] Jean-Louis Gasset [now manages Bordeaux].”
Speaking while in charge of Spurs, Pochettino revealed he considered the French top-flight as a “good source of major players” but raised doubts over the competitiveness of the division, something that has drastically changed this time around.
He added: “I watch a lot of live matches in the French league.
“The championship is not very attractive as PSG are a long way ahead of the other teams and I mostly look at the French league because it is a source of major players, players who would adapt well to playing in England.”
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There has been anticipation that Pochettino was on standby for the job and it’s the worst kept secret in football that the 48-year-old has his admirers at Old Trafford.
As Pochettino soon found, a vacancy at a top-level European club is a rarity and it would be a huge surprise if he was to let another opportunity fall by the wayside.
When speaking on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football at the beginning of November, Pochettino made it clear he was ready for his next challenge after a year on the sidelines.
“I always feel ready to be in the game because I love football. It’s not a stress. It’s not a stress to go to the training ground,” he said.
Mauricio Pochettino played for PSG between 2001 and 2003
“I am looking forward to being involved in the game again. I love the game and in these times it is difficult.
“We are inside, we are working, doing things. But it’s not the same as being involved every single day, sharing with your players, the staff, with the club. You miss that. That’s the reality.”
Pochettino’s dream could now become a reality and there is plenty of substance behind his attraction to the project.
PSG have been under Qatari ownership since 2022 through the state-owned shareholding organisation QSI.
Coincidentally, Pochettino has close ties in Qatar and his relationship with those in the Middle East makes him almost the perfect candidate for the job.
Back in 2019 during an international break, he ventured to Doha to present a coaching masterclass at the Aspire Fellows Summit.
Mauricio Pochettino visited Qatar on several occasions at the back end of 2019
He was back a few months later, this time after his sacking at Tottenham, after being invited by the organisers of the 2022 World Cup.
Furthermore, PSG are expected to make a fourth loan offer for Tottenham outcast Dele Alli in January.
The Ligue 1 champions tried and failed with a move back in October after failing to satisfy the demands of Daniel Levy.
Now Alli will chomping at the bit as the prospect of reuniting with former boss Pochettino, as he looks to get his career back on track.
At a stretch, the same could be said of former Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen, who has been told he can leave Inter Milan this winter just a year after joining from Tottenham.
PSG are exclusively shopping in the loan market for the time being and both players could be the ideal way to kickstart a new era under Pochettino, should a deal with the former Premier League boss be wrapped up in the coming days or weeks.