Tottenham boss Tim Sherwood had done little to endear himself to the Spurs faithful in recent weeks with his embarrassing touchline conduct in fixtures against Benfica and Arsenal, admittedly in the Benfica instance he was significantly provoked however amongst a period of poor results and poor performances from his side, Sherwood has today only made things worse for himself by publically slamming Tottenham Hotspur fan favourite Glenn Hoddle.
A bit of a back-story to this comes from before Christmas when Andre Villas-Boas was dismissed as Tottenham Hotspur manager following a heavy 5-0 home defeat to Liverpool. It was muted that Glenn Hoddle would be given the job until the end of the season when a long term candidate could be put in place. Tottenham supporters were on the whole in favour of this with Glenn Hoddle having engrained himself into Spurs folklore with his performances for the club as a player despite a less than successful managerial stint in charge of the club between 2001 and 2003.
Glenn Hoddle has all but confirmed that he was close to being offered the job in December during his work for Sky Sports suggesting that he would have been willing to take the job through to the end of the season, “I nearly went there this time round till the end of the season. I said I was prepared to do that. I wouldn’t have been prepared to do it for any other club apart from Tottenham because it’s in my DNA.”
It is interesting however that Glenn Hoddle for whatever reason didn’t end up taking the job as it was offered to Tim Sherwood instead, “I would have been happy to [take the job] but they made their decision and they’ve moved on.” Glenn Hoddle has since gone on to cover several Tottenham Hotspur matches as a pundit for Sky Sports with the most recent being last Sunday’s 4-0 defeat at Anfield.
Hoddle was very critical of Spurs’ body language prior to kick-off singling out Jan Vertonghen for leaning against the tunnel wall with both hands behind his back. Now in the grand scheme of things this seems rather inconsequential but when Jan Vertonghen was at fault for Liverpool’s opening goal just minutes into the match it seems as if Glenn Hoddle’s claims that the Tottenham players were “beaten before kick-off” hold a degree of weight.
Tim Sherwood, speaking in today’s pre-match press conference ahead of Monday evening’s clash with relegation threatened Sunderland, claimed that Glenn Hoddle has “nothing else to talk about” and was quick to leap to the defence of his players. “It’s been a long time since Glenn Hoddle has managed a team and the game has moved on significantly.”
Tim Sherwood and Glenn Hoddle do have a history of conflict within the media with Tim Sherwood publically pushing for Glenn Hoddle to be sacked near the end of his tenure as manager at White Hart Lane in 2003.
This as previously mentioned may not seem like a big story in the grand scheme of things however when you consider Tim Sherwood’s position, criticising one of Tottenham’s most revered past players is not the smartest move. Tim Sherwood, despite a good run of results early on in his spell in charge, has struggled recently with players seeming to be rather unmotivated to play for him and the manager’s case hasn’t been helped by the fact the former Blackburn Rovers midfield has persisted on playing certain players out of position or in some cases not at all.
Christian Eriksen is a technically gifted number 10, yet he is being asked to play in an uncomfortable position on the left hand side when a natural winger in Nacer Chadli is being given the slot just behind the striker. Little things like that just make no sense, even more so when you see Eriksen looking so woefully out of his depth trying to defend against a surging Glen Johnson run down the right hand side which led to Liverpool’s opening goal on Sunday.
Daniel Levy is not averse to changing managers at the drop of a hat and with all the talk regarding Louis van Gaal’s future perhaps lying in English football the rumours simply won’t go away. Tim Sherwood should be given time in the job, there’s no doubt about that however with a manager of van Gaal’s ability and reputation available in the very near future it seems to be the worst possible time for Tim Sherwood to criticise a Spurs fan favourite with his own position so shaky as it is.