Gary Neville backs Mauricio Pochettino to succeed Jose Mourinho at Manchester United

by Leo Nieboer

Gary Neville has backed Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino to succeed Jose Mourinho at Manchester United in the future, insisting the Argentine deserved it following his work in North London.

Pochettino arrived at Tottenham in 2014 and has revolutionised the club, securing third and second place in the previous two campaigns.

He remains unable to secure that vital first trophy as Spurs boss, however, with his team recently falling apart in the FA Cup semi-final against Man United.

But Neville, speaking on Sky Sports, has insisted that Pochettino, despite winning no trophies, has the credentials to succeed at Old Trafford.

“Pochettino is doing a terrific job,” he said. “You give a manager money, and he will win the league more times than not.”

“The one thing I would say: When Jose Mourinho leaves Manchester United, he is the guy who I would want to manage my football club. He deserves it.”

There is a lot to like about Pochettino. Over the last four years he has transformed Spurs into a side admired by many across Europe, blessed with pace and power and energy which provides the backbone for the current national team. This was a club that, not so long ago, nobody took seriously. Pochettino has come in and changed that, drilling into his players an indefatigable work ethic and fostering what looks like a genuine team spirit.

But then there is that one nagging shortcoming: trophies. Plenty of supporters prefer Pochettino over Mourinho because of his penchant for fast, attack-minded football. But there is, without doubt, an intangible quality to Mourinho – a kind of nous, a knowhow for scalping silverware – that the Spurs boss simply doesn’t have.

Any manager of United, in my view, needs that embedded winning analytic before anything else.

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