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hot property Manchester United or Real Madrid...who'll make the first move for Mauricio Pochettino?


Former Tottenham Hotspur's head coach Mauricio Pochettino is in demand

Former Tottenham Hotspur's head coach Mauricio Pochettino is in demand

AFP via Getty Images

Former Tottenham Hotspur's head coach Mauricio Pochettino is in demand

Mauricio Pochettino is a believer in the energia universal, the principle of which revolves around a guiding power, which means nothing happens by chance. And that universal energy may once again be blowing in his direction after Manchester United’s elimination from the Champions League and Real Madrid’s continuing struggles.

Over a year since Pochettino was sacked by Tottenham Hotspur, he is ready to channel his own powers into a new project, possibly at United, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s successor, or at Madrid, in place of Zinedine Zidane.

Many people believe the Old Trafford club should act now before they miss out on the injection of energy they so desperately need.

It is not only about positive energy, for Pochettino. Eliminating the kind of negative energy Paul Pogba’s agent Mino Raiola had cast over United on the eve of their 3-2 defeat at RB Leipzig, on Tuesday, is equally as important.

So how would he go about fixing United? The job is not dissimilar to what he faced at Tottenham in 2014, albeit on a much larger scale.

Responsibility is something that Pochettino (above) demands of his players, and many would argue it is a quality that has been lacking at United since Alex Ferguson retired.

Too often, United’s players have let their managers carry the can for their poor performances. But Pochettino (pictured right) has always made it one of his first jobs to challenge the mentalities of those working under him.

Those who do not show Pochettino they can handle responsibility or abide by his values generally do not last too long, although they are all given a chance.

On being appointed at Spurs, he named Emmanuel Adebayor and Younes Kaboul among his three captains, even though Adebayor’s behavioural problems were well known and Kaboul was a strong character whose form was wildly erratic.

Pochettino wanted to see if they could channel their energy in the right direction, but soon found they could not and they quickly disappeared, with Harry Kane getting his chance.

Kane, Toby Alderweireld and Hugo Lloris, the third of Pochettino’s three captains, remain, along with Son Heung-min, Tottenham’s most important players to this day.

One can only guess how Pochettino would handle United’s squad, but it is fair to assume that Pogba would be given a chance before being cast aside if he could not show his commitment to the club.

Marcus Rashford, however, appears to have the perfect player profile, a young man who has shone on and off the pitch, and who would flourish under Pochettino, who is on record saying he wanted to work with both Anthony Martial and Bruno Fernandes while at Spurs.


Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann and Man United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann and Man United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer


Leipzig coach Julian Nagelsmann and Man United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

At Old Trafford, Rashford, David de Gea, Fernandes and captain Harry Maguire appear to be a ready-made leadership group.

Pochettino would not fine his Spurs players for being a couple of minutes late or wearing the wrong clothing, but respect always had to be shown and, in Lloris, Kane and Jan Vertonghen, he had players who led by example.

Maguire’s down-to-earth personality and determination to work his way through what has been a difficult time would have been appreciated by Pochettino.

It has been clear over his management career, that he enjoys working with pliable, young players and one can only imagine that he would relish the opportunity to help shape the careers of Marcus Greenwood, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Axel Tuanzebe, who has shown plenty of promise during his few outings at United and on loan at Aston Villa.

Most of all, however, Pochettino would ensure United were never reliant on one man in the way they have been since the arrival of Fernandes. He has always talked up the talents of the players who were not in the team because he wanted his entire squad to feel that positive energy, the energia universal, for when they were needed and players were never viewed as coming in from the cold.

Pochettino’s teams are like families, with everybody aware of their value, while United’s family has been broken for some time. It is clear who should be tasked with repairing it. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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