Interim manager can be head coach until May but has been warned to ease his demands as chairman Daniel Levy considers long-term replacements for Andre Villas-Boas
Tim Sherwood has been offered the Tottenham Hotspur job until the end of the season, but warned to scale back his demands by chairman Daniel Levy.
The pair were involved in a game of brinkmanship during meetings at Tottenham’s Enfield training ground on Monday, as Levy attempted to end some of the uncertainty around the club, but also leave the door open to approach Holland manager Louis van Gaal after the World Cup.
There were issues over whether Sherwood would be given a pay rise to the £500,000-a-year he earned as the club’s technical co-ordinator, but a compromise agreement was struck after hours of talks.
The fact Tottenham have appointed Sherwood until the end of the 2014/15 season indicates they will not pursue a big name appointment in the summer, as long as things go well.
Levy had met Holland manager Louis van Gaal and the Dutchman was thought to be keen on taking over at Spurs after the World Cup. Enquiries were also made regarding Frank de Boer, Murat Yakin and Marcello Lippi.
Following negotiations at Tottenham’s Enfield training complex, Levy said: “We were extremely reluctant to make a change mid-season, but felt we had to do so in the club’s best interests.
“We have a great squad and we owe them a head coach who will bring out the best in them and allow them to flourish and enjoy a strong, exciting finish to the season.
“We are in the fortunate position of having within our club a talented coach in Tim Sherwood. We believe Tim has both the knowledge and the drive to take the squad forward.”
Sherwood was told by Levy that he was being offered the chance of a lifetime to cut his teeth in management at a club the size of Tottenham.
Director of football Franco Baldini was not part of Monday’s talks. But the Italian had already given his blessing to the appointment of Sherwood and believes it is the best move Spurs could have made at this stage.
While appreciating his honesty and ambition, Tottenham officials were surprised by the bold nature of Sherwood’s public demands in the immediate aftermath of his first victory against Southampton.
Sherwood made it clear he was not interested in being effectively appointed as a caretaker head coach and stuck to his word.
The Boxing Day clash against West Brom will be Sherwood’s first game as permanent head coach and left-back Danny Rose has revealed it is not just Levy who Sherwood has challenged.
According to Rose, Sherwood laid into his players during his first training session as interim head coach and has already written a new set of rules that must be observed while he is in charge.
“People may think that Tim is not a big name or doesn’t have a big CV, but you know he will take no nonsense from anybody,” said Rose. “His first training session, a couple of lads rolled out on to the training pitch late and he got us in a circle and said it was unacceptable.
“Fortunately, it wasn’t me who was late. Tim set out some new rules and you know not to mess with him, and that’s good.”
Asked what Sherwood’s rules are, Rose replied: “Punctuality, when we go down to eat, team meetings. Stuff on the training pitch as well. When he speaks, you’ve got to listen. It’s great.”
Rose had problems with his own discipline early in his Tottenham career and the 23-year-old is grateful to Sherwood for helping him realise he needed to work harder.
“Tim came to the club and probably about four years ago I sat down with him and Harry Redknapp, and they told me I needed to train a lot harder to have a chance in the team,” said Rose.
“I didn’t get that many chances under Harry. But from when I did change my attitude on the training pitch, I won Tim over and from then he has always been pushing me to try to get into the team – along with others like Jake Livermore, Nabil Bentaleb and Andros Townsend as well.
“Tim and Harry helped me with my attitude to training. I went out on loan last season and did very well, and that was down to Martin O’Neill, and I came back and I started the season well and that was down to Andre (Villas-Boas). But Tim has been backing me and a lot of the other youngsters for a good three or four years.”