Daniel Levy’s quandary: Tottenham look to Ryan Mason again as contenders to replace Antonio Conte waver

Ryan Mason. Credit: Adrian Dennis/PA

Miguel Delaney© Independent.co.uk

Daniel Levy is consulting with close advisors over whether to give Ryan Mason the Tottenham job until the end of the season or try and bring in a new manager before then, with Antonio Conte certain to be sacked before the next Premier League fixture against Everton.

The Italian has returned to his home country for the international break and it is anticipated there will be no movement until the parties can have face-to-face meetings, with potential negotiation about the wording of any departure. It may be described as mutual, although Conte would naturally not want to give up any of a £4m pay-off.

The breaking point that was Saturday’s explosive press conference in some ways worked out in terms of a timing, as Levy and the Spurs board have breathing space from a situation that was already turning “toxic”.

It is understood that more of the dressing room and a core of senior players have become fed up with Conte in the immediate aftermath of the manager’s attack.

While the group have enjoyed the greater freedom of working under Mason, Levy is at least open to the idea of bringing in the next manager to try and secure Champions League football for next season.

Weighing over everything is the fact that there is still over a quarter of the season to play, with an awful lot at stake, and Levy is intent not to just let it drift like what happened after sacking Jose Mourinho in 2020-21.

Mauricio Pochettino, Thomas Tuchel, Robert De Zerbi and Luis Enrique are the names known to be on a shortlist, although there would be reluctance from each of them to be dropped into such a situation mid-season, and some would need convincing to join Spurs.

While Pochettino is the obvious fan favourite, it is understood he wavers between wanting to go back and thinking he should explore his career elsewhere.

Tuchel is probably the coolest of all potential options, and both he and Pochettino are known to be keen on the Real Madrid job.

There is some chance of that becoming available in the summer if Carlo Ancelotti departs.