The staff of Mauricio Pochettino was surprised when he returned to Tottenham Hotspur after his summer holidays, according to sources.

Pochettino was very open to leaving Spurs before the start of the 19-20 season, but he stayed in the job because he didn’t get an offer from one of the few clubs he would have considered.

Pochettino’s sights were on Manchester United, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain, but none of those jobs became available. Pochettino has previously said he would never manage Barcelona due to his allegiances to Espanyol, but even that job is now in play for him.

Pochettino did not want to come to a “mutual consent” arrangement and would only leave Spurs if it meant he’d immediately join another club or if Daniel Levy fired him.