Tottenham boss Ange Postecoglou has doffed his cap to the intuitiveness of West Ham vice-chair Karren Brady after she predicted in May he would take the Premier League by storm.
Spurs host West Ham on Thursday aiming to end a four-match winless run, but they still sit fifth in the table after an excellent start to the campaign.
Postecoglou has been without a host of players during the past month but earned plaudits for an unwavering commitment to his attacking philosophy, which resulted in Tottenham fighting back to earn a 3-3 draw at Manchester City last weekend.
Back in May, Brady used her column for the Sun to tip the then Celtic boss to flourish in England if given the chance.
Asked if he had seen Brady’s “love letter”, Postecoglou said: “Ha ha, no. I don’t know Karren, I’ve never met her and I don’t think I’ve ever come across her, but in many respects, wouldn’t that make her fairly ahead of the game?
“I reckon she’s a pretty smart operator! I’m not sure about the love letter stuff, mate.
“I guess me moving to Celtic kind of brought me closer to this part of the world.
“I was aware, particularly Celtic-Rangers, everyone down here watches it and it gets into people’s consciousness. I guess if Karren knows, then all credit to her.”
Tottenham head into Thursday’s London derby having ended a three-match losing streak.
— The Sun Football (@TheSunFootball) May 5, 2023
Dejan Kulusevski 90th-minute effort at the Etihad Stadium earned a draw for Postecoglou’s injury-hit team, who were predicted by some pundits to lose heavily at the Etihad if he continued to adopt his bold tactics.
“With a game like that, when you come out of it, what you want is to give the players something,” Postecoglou said.
“Show them something to say, ‘look, you did it. It’s not just words, this is not just an idea, you did it’. And it may have only been for small parts of the game, but if you can do it for small parts, then the challenge is can we extend that to bigger areas?
“Whereas if you never even try it, you never know. So, if I changed my approach for the Man City game, that’s where I would have lost. I wouldn’t have had any opportunity to give that feedback to the players.
“So, from that perspective, we got a lot of good information out of that game. Good and bad, like areas where we really struggled.
“Like I explained it to the other coaches, when you’re panning for gold, there’s a lot of dirt there, but you’re just looking for that little speck.
“And we’ve got quite a few specks of gold that I can show the players after the game that say, you know, if we keep digging here, this will get some nuggets eventually.”
Tottenham will have Cristian Romero back for the visit of West Ham and Richarlison returned after minor surgery on his groin to make a cameo in Manchester in a welcome boost after their list of absentees had entered double figures.
It has forced Postecoglou to use the majority of his squad, but one player without an appearance this season is former captain Hugo Lloris, who had been expected to depart the club this summer.
Postecoglou has kept Lloris part of the first-team fold, but it is widely accepted he will depart in 2024, either during the January transfer window or once his contract expires next summer.
Postecoglou added: “Whilst Hugo hasn’t been playing, he hasn’t changed his demeanour in any way. He is very professional and great for the other keepers to have him there with his experience.
“January? It’s a decision for Hugo and the club. I don’t have that power and don’t want that power (to release him).
“Hugo is a member of this squad and how he trains every day is important to me. If he wasn’t then I’d be dealing with it but I haven’t had to. He has been absolutely first-class and as a manager, I don’t take that for granted.”
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