EPL

Charismatic Postecoglou the perfect fit for Spurs' post-Kane rebuild, says Heskey

By Sports Desk November 09, 2023

Ange Postecoglou has done a phenomenal job since taking over at Tottenham and was a natural choice to oversee the club's rebuild due to his charismatic personality.

That is the view of former England striker Emile Heskey, who came up against Postecoglou in the A-League during a two-year spell in Australia with Newcastle Jets between 2012 and 2014.

Postecoglou has had a remarkable impact on Spurs since taking charge, making the best start by any manager in Premier League history by overseeing a return of 26 points from his first 10 games in the competition.

Tottenham trail champions Manchester City by just a single point at the summit ahead of Saturday's trip to Wolves, having suffered their first league defeat under Postecoglou last time out.

Cristian Romero and Destiny Udogie were both sent off as Spurs fell to a 4-1 defeat to Chelsea on Monday, though Postecoglou still earned praise for implementing a daring high line with nine men.

Heskey thinks Postecoglou's openness and willingness to take inspiration from different cultures has helped him succeed, telling Stats Perform: "Ange has been fantastic. 

"I obviously played in Australia for two years, and I saw some of the stuff that the Aussie coaches can do, [it's] very, very technical. 

"A lot of them work off the Dutch philosophy, but with a bit of Aussie grit, they love that. But then he obviously went over to Japan in different places, so he probably learnt the discipline from them.

"Working with that and getting some of that stuff, bringing it over to Europe… what he did at Celtic was phenomenal. 

"Now taking that step into Spurs – and Spurs is a big club – we've got to give it to them. 

"The training ground, the stadium, they're building a squad, they're in London. They should be where they are right now. 

"He's probably the right manager to actually build that, the right manager to take a lot of the pressure away because he's approachable, he's charismatic, he's got everything. 

"He takes a lot of the pressure away from the place that so they can actually perform as well."

Tottenham's flying start to the season has come despite the loss of their all-time leading goalscorer Harry Kane, who is in exceptional form for his new club Bayern Munich, scoring 19 goals and adding seven assists in just 15 appearances for the Bundesliga champions.

Though Heskey accepts Kane's departure may have altered expectations at Spurs, he does not believe it can be seen as a positive for the club.

"I don't know if it [losing Kane] was a bonus," Heskey said. "You can't say getting rid of Harry Kane was a bonus because of what he's doing and what he's done. 

"But I think it's a different focal point now, isn't it? I think it's more of a team focal point. Not just one player. 

"You've got Son [Heung-min], he has to step up to the plate, you've got [James] Maddison, who will always step up to the plate, that's just his temperament. 

"You've got all these players that are now having to pull their weight because they're not just relying on one person."

Postecoglou is looking to avoid back-to-back defeats when Spurs visit Wolves on Saturday, having not lost consecutive league matches since he was in charge of Yokohama F. Marinos in Japan, losing three in a row between November 2020 and February 2021.

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