Former Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino is top of Athletic Club’s wishlist if they are to sack Gaizka Garitano, according to a report.
Pochettino has been out of work since he was fired by Spurs last November. He has been heavily linked with the Manchester United job as speculation continues to swirl about Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s future.
On top of that, he has also been mentioned as a front-runner for both PSG and Real Madrid if either European giant decides to part ways with their manager.
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It is something of a surprise therefore to see Pochettino linked to Athletic by Marca.
The report says that for now the current boss Garitano will be safe, despite the team sitting 14th in La Liga going into the international break.
But if results don’t pick up and they do fire him the dream appointment would be Pochettino.
Image credit: Getty Images
The report admits that it might be tough to lure Pochettino to Bilbao but point out that he did learn from club legend Marcelo Bielsa and he has spoken glowingly about the club in the past.
If Pochettino were to turn them down the other options are a possible return for Ernesto Valverde or, more likely, a move for former Valencia and Villarreal manager Marcelinho.
Let's make no bones about it, Pochettino would be one hell of an appointment for Athletic if they could pull it off.
The whole crux of Athletic's philosophy is get every inch out of what you have.
What did Pochettino do at Tottenham? Get everything out of what he had.
Mauricio Pochettino and Marcelo Bielsa in Spain
Image credit: Eurosport
The connection with Bielsa is romantic as well, and it would be absolutely fascinating to watch.
However it's extremely hard to see this actually coming to fruition, such as the offers that are likely to land on Pochettino's table.