Whilst there’s a very high likelihood of Mundo Deportivo being on a stirring mission, their Thursday claims about Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho are so Machiavellian, and therefore entertaining, they deserve a mention.

Continually making as much out of Real Madrid strife as they can, as any self respecting Catalan sport department does, Mundo Deportivo are edging Tottenham’s manager forward as Zinedine Zidane’s replacement.

The twist in the story is Jose Mourinho. On page 20 of their Thursday edition it’s claimed the Manchester United manager has personally told Florentino Perez that Pochettino is the man for Real Madrid.

That would be somewhat self-serving from Mourinho, talking Real Madrid into going all out for Pochettino could create instability for Tottenham, and even see them lose their manager.

With Spurs having a wonderful squad and threatening a success breakthrough being an irritating fly buzzing around Jose’s head, this is one way of dealing with it.

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With the Portuguese coach thought to have agreed a new Manchester United contract, then perhaps he sees a future without Pochettino around as a future he’d prefer.

Of course, if the claims are true, Mourinho may well be making the recommendation from the goodness of his heart. But this is Mourinho, so probably not.