The Tottenham Hotspur technical director’s departure has been in the pipeline for a while – but the exact timing of it is tinged with irony.
Franco Baldini’s time at White Hart Lane will always remain a mystery.
It’s long been accepted that the Italian was an appointment that didn’t work at Tottenham. It is only now, though, that Baldini has finally left the north London club.
The 54-year-old’s departure appeared to be in the offing for a while but was confirmed on Monday afternoon.
And yet there is a heavy irony behind the timing of the official exit. Indeed, Baldini’s most controversial signing – Erik Lamela – seems to be coming good…
As technical director, Baldini was always going to live or die by his signings at Tottenham. And the failure of so many of the seven that came in after Gareth Bale’s departure had sealed the final nails in his director’s coffin a while back.
But Spurs have still been left with Christian Eriksen, Nacer Chadli and Lamela.
Now, spending the money the north London side did on the Argentine is still very questionable indeed – many would say unforgivable. Manchester United recently spent a similar amount on Anthony Martial, a younger striker who has come good straight away.
That Lamela, now 23, has taken two full seasons to put together a week of high-standard football puts the poor nature of the signing into context.
But the Tottenham forward has been brilliant in the past week – which means the timing of Baldini’s exit is tinged with irony. Lamela’s Manchester City display, as well as his performance against Crystal Palace, was the perfect parting gift for the Italian.