‘Business as usual’ for Tim Sherwood despite report he is to be sacked

Tottenham manager preparing his side to face Sunderland at White Hart Lane

Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood watches from the stands during the game against Liverpool at Anfield. Photograph: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Tottenham Hotspur manager Tim Sherwood watches from the stands during the game against Liverpool at Anfield. Photograph: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Mon, Apr 7, 2014, 16:07

Tim Sherwood insists it is “business as usual” despite reports that the Tottenham Hotspur manager will be leaving the club at the end of the season.

The Spurs manager, who replaced Andre Villas-Boas in December on an 18-month deal, is widely expected to be replaced in the summer with Holland coach Louis van Gaal tipped to take over.

And his preparation for Monday’s Premier League visit of Sunderland was further disrupted after Sky Sports News reported that he was now a dead man walking.

“I can’t say much right now,” he told Sky Sports News. “What I can say is tonight (Monday) is business as usual. I’m setting this team up to win a football match for the benefit of the club and the 35,000 Spurs fans who will come and watch. I’ll speak at a later stage.”

The Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has explored hiring Van Gaal once his involvement at the World Cup finals has ended and attempts to finalise what would be an exciting appointment have been ongoing.

Levy has considered other candidates, including Ajax’s Frank De Boer and Southampton’s Mauricio Pochettino, but either one would be difficult to prise from their employer. De Boer might consider leaving Ajax but only for Barcelona, who he represented during his playing career, or a club of similar stature.

Van Gaal becomes a free agent after the World Cup, when he will be succeeded by Guus Hiddink. The 62-year-old is on record as saying that he wants to manage in England and he met Levy before Sherwood was installed.

Franco Baldini, the director of football, would stand to be a casualty of Van Gaal’s arrival, and not only because Van Gaal always likes to have total control at a club. Baldini’s stock is low after the poor return of the seven signings that he oversaw last summer at a cost of well over €100 million.

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