Paulo Fonseca was expected to take over as manager of Tottenham Hotspur when Jose Mourinho was fired back in the summer of 2021, but that didn’t happen. Fonseca has now brought up the subject once more and described what transpired.
After Mourinho was fired near the end of the 2020–21 season, only a few days before the Carabao Cup final, Ryan Mason served as interim manager for the remainder of that campaign.
That summer, a humiliating merry-go-round of various managers being linked to the opening at Tottenham and either withdrawing from the race or being rejected by the club played out.
Nuno Espirito Santo was ultimately chosen by Spurs, although that choice did not turn out to be a good one. Antonio Conte took the Portuguese coach’s place after his dismissal in November.
Naturally, Conte is no longer in charge, and Tottenham supporters are thrilled with his successor, Ange Postecoglou. The situation, however, might have been very different if Paulo Fonseca had accepted the position in 2021.
Paulo Fonseca needed a year away from football
Speaking to O Jogo (via Sport Witness) about the chance he was given and why it didn’t work out, Fonseca revealed that the deal was hampered by changes at the top of Spurs, thus he chose to take a vacation from the game.
It’s no secret that everything was agreed upon with Tottenham when he left Roma, but nothing came to pass, he claimed. There were invitations, but I felt I should take the year.
According to reports, the hiring of Fabio Paratici “completely changed the outcome” of talks. Fonseca regrets losing the chance to manage in England, though, without a doubt.
It has always captivated me, and I would really love to have this experience, he continued. However, I say it objectively because I’m competing in a top-notch championship. Although continuing in France makes me feel content, all coaches would give anything to experience coaching in England.
“I lamented this conclusion; everything was going smoothly until a particular person arrived. I was a little disappointed that I was denied the opportunity to lead this significant club and qualify for the Premier League. However, I like to focus on the present and the future rather than much on the past. I’m content right where I am.
Who knows where Fonseca and Spurs would be now if he had accepted the position at the time, but happily, things at Tottenham look to be better than ever right now. Let’s hope Ange Postecoglou’s administration lasts a long time.