Mauricio Pochettino is reportedly on his way out of PSG after having succeeded Thomas Tuchel in the hot seat at the Parc des Princes less than six months ago. The rumour mills are suggesting that there might be a reunion with former side Tottenham Hotspur on the cards for the Argentine.
This new development opens up doors for French manager Zinedine Zidane to be at the helm of PSG this summer. Although it is not as straightforward as it looks at first glance.
The French legend will return to France reportedly after leaving Marseille all those years ago.
ZINEDINE ZIDANE TO PSG IN WAKE OF POCH’S DEPARTURE?
They say “Never Go Back” but for Pochettino it might be a case of “Grass isn’t always greener on the other side”. Reports suggest that the Argentine isn’t seen as a manager who can handle the dressing room of the French heavyweights, even though he has won two trophies in the French capital.
He also reportedly told PSG about his desire to depart from the club recently.
The former Espanyol manager is being linked with a return to his old club Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League. Meanwhile Zinedine Zidane has emerged as the favourite to succeed the 49-year old in Paris.
Zidane left Real Madrid at the end of the 2020-21 season after finishing the season trophyless and frustrated with the media for what he perceived was targeted criticism.
Earlier it was expected that the Frenchman would wait for Didier Deschamps to step down from the role of the French national team manager after the 2022 World Cup, but now, things look different.
The position at PSG, if it becomes vacant this summer, will be the former Juventus player’s most likely destination after departing from the Spanish capital.
Zidane is regarded as one of the few managers in the world who can handle what is popularly dubbed as the ‘impossible job’ in France, mainly for the juggling of egos in that dressing room and single-minded focus on winning the UCL.
ZIDANE POURS HEART OUT IN LETTER TO REAL MADRID FANS
Zidane had also been linked with the Juventus job, but the Turin-based club recently appointed Massimiliano Allegri to replace fellow Italian Andrea Pirlo in the capital of Piedmont.
The Frenchman, in an open letter addressed to Real Madrid fans, expressed his angst and frustration at the way he was treated by club officials in Madrid.
“I’m leaving because I feel the club no longer has the faith in me I need.” “These days the life of a coach in the dugout at a big club is two seasons, little more,” he added.
“For it to last longer the human relationships are essential, they are more important than money, more important than fame, more important than everything.
“Luckily I had these amazing lads who were with me to the death. When things turned ugly they saved me with magnificent victories. Because they believed in me and knew I believed in them,” he wrote.
And now if Zidane looks likely to take the job in the French capital, he will have his task cut out for the next season.
PSG IN HUNT FOR DOMESTIC AND EUROPEAN SUCCESS
PSG missed out on the Ligue 1 title this year by a solitary point as Lille won the domestic honour in France. As such, it will be his job to restore their dominance in France in addition to making them a force to be reckoned with in Europe.
PSG came close to European glory in the 2019-20 season, but fell short in the title decider in Lisbon to an all-conquering Bayern Munich side.
The last two coaches sacked by Les Parisiens have both experienced European glory this past season – Unai Emery won the Europa League for a record fourth time and Thomas Tuchel won the Champions League with Chelsea.
In stark contrast, PSG remain without any European triumph to their name even though they have some of the world’s best footballers amongst their ranks at the Parc des Princes.
PSG’S MANAGER – THE BIRD TRAPPED IN A GOLDEN CAGE
The job of being the manager of PSG comes with its pros and cons – something that is not lost on Zidane. The coach isn’t the one who calls the shots in Paris, instead it is the players in the dressing room and the club’s top level executives who wield influence over the goings-on in the training ground and on the pitch.
As a result, the position is considered to be the most difficult job in France as the manager is just another gear in the grand machine.
Therefore, it will be interesting to see how things pan out at PSG if Zidane is chosen for the managerial role at Parc des Princes given his headstrong and devil-may-care attitude when it comes to enforcing discipline and dealing with unruly elements of his team. Either way, fireworks are sure to ensue.