Dubai: Top flight football clubs pay exorbitant fees to ensure they land their coveted transfer targets, usually after protracted contract discussions have finally been agreed.
These talks can last weeks if not months and the reason for the delay in getting the I’s dotted and the T’s crossed can be due to all manner of reasons, or often clauses, that are inserted and cause a stumbling block. These clauses have known to be downright weird in the past…
Could this be why Premier League trio Tottenham, Everton and Crystal Palace are yet to formerly appoint new managers?
Spurs sacked Jose Mourinho in April and have since seen the likes of Antonio Conte turn them down, while Everton were dealt a major blow when Carlo Ancelotti resigned at the end of the season when Real Madrid came calling.
Palace knew they would have to find a replacement for the elderly Roy Hodgson who announced he would be retiring at the end of the campaign but none of these teams appear any closer in getting a new coach in.
Could an oddball clause be preventing a potential new boss from taking up the hot seat? Not that such clauses are anything new. Dennis Bergkamp, who is well known for his fear of flying, insisted when negotiating his contract with Arsenal that he would never travel to away fixtures on any aircrafts, while Luis Suarez had an anti-bite clause in his Barcelona contract put in...
Maybe these three clubs are losing out on potential new managers by insisting they prove their commitment to them in a bizarre way such as when Spencer Prior was made to eat a sheep's testicle when he joined Cardiff City. I doubt it, but for Everton and Palace, the search could take some more time. Neither club have won any silverware in years nor do they look likely to in the near future and they also do not have any European football on the horizon to attract a top coach. Both have been linked with former Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo but as of yet, no deal has been completed. The Toffees have also been linked with a move for Brighton’s Graham Potter while former Liverpool boss Rafa Benitez’s name continues to pop up.
As for Tottenham, they have seen talks with former Inter Milan coach Antonio Conte break down but are now currently believed be in discussions with former Roma coach Paulo Fonseca.
Ryan Mason is in temporary charge but chairman Daniel Levy needs to act swiftly and get someone who can take the club to the next level. Whoever the next manager is, it will be Tottenham's 10th during Levy's 20 years at the club. Although they are not a club in crisis, they are surrounded by uncertainty not least with the future of Harry Kane. But Tottenham would still be an attractive proposition for any manager; they have that impressive new stadium, a state-of-the-art training ground and talented young players coming through such as Dane Scarlett and Alfie Devine.
But the longer all three teams leave it to bring in a new coach, the more likely they will struggle next season. It takes time for a new manager to bed in and to identify any potential weaknesses in the squad he is inheriting, not to mention attempt to bring in new players to the club.
They all had better get their skates on.