Tottenham Hotspur journalist Alasdair Gold has expressed his surprise that Aston Villa boss Dean Smith was not part of the club’s search for a new manager this past summer.
Spurs went through a number of candidates for the role during the summer before eventually settling on former Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo after a search that felt like it was never-ending.
However, Gold thinks that the Villa man should have been considered for the role after the work he did with the Midlands side last season, taking them from the brink of relegation in their first year back in the division, to finishing 11th last campaign.
Gold gave his view whilst appearing on the Aston Villa-focused Claret and Blue podcast ahead of the game between the two sides this weekend, where he explained that he felt based on his work last season – especially compared to the job Nuno did at Wolves – that Smith would have been the better option to pursue.
He said: “I was really surprised he was never in the talk about Tottenham’s new manager, I really do – because I think he’s done that good a job. And especially ending up with Nuno who, certainly last season with Wolves and Villa, you can look at how Villa did compared to Wolves and everything, and I was surprised he was never mentioned, I really was. Obviously great news for Villa, as you can see.”
TIF Thoughts on Alasdair Gold’s comments about Dean Smith and Tottenham Hotspur…
Nuno in or Nuno Out?
Gold is perhaps a victim of recency bias when it comes to his comments here about Smith and Nuno, because whilst the former did do a good job with Villa last year and finished above Wolves in the table, let’s not forget that Nuno does also have a track record of doing well in this division.
He managed to take Wolves to back-to-back 7th-place finishes in the league following promotion from the Championship. Not only that, but there were a number of factors outside of his control in 2020/21, most notably the injury sustained by forward Raul Jimenez, so the two men shouldn’t be judged on just one season.
Plus, when you factor in that Smith is an Aston Villa fan, whilst Gold might have wanted him to be considered, it probably wouldn’t have been so straightforward in getting him out of Villa Park if Spurs had tried.