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Marcelino Garcia Toral appears to have ruled himself out of contention for the Tottenham Hotspur job, telling Marca that he is ‘happy’ at Athletic Bilbao. 

In truth, it felt a little overly-ambitious from the get-go. 

According to the Athletic, Spurs reached out to former Sevilla, Valencia and Villarreal boss Marcelino in the aftermath of Jose Mourinho’s sacking on Monday. 

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Considering that the 55-year-old only took the Athletic job in January, signing an 18-month contract with the Basque giants, it would be a major surprise if he walked away so soon. 

Following Wednesday’s goalless La Liga draw with Real Betis, Marcelino issued a rather bullish response to speculation linking him with one of England’s biggest clubs. 

“I have nothing to say about Tottenham. I am happy at Athletic, for the welcome that the fans and the club have given me,” Marcelino explained. 

Photo by Jose Luis Contreras/DAX Images/NurPhoto via Getty Images

“It is time to continue working with the greatest possible humility so that Athletic get better, which is what I am focused on.” 

While comparisons may be drawn with a certain Mr Mourinho – Marcelino’s ferocious intensity can often leave his players and bosses feeling rather burned out – that is where the similarities end. 

Marcelino is famed throughout Spanish football for his high-octane, all-guns-blazing approach, those rapid counter-attacks and an obsession with keeping his players in tip-top physical condition. 

In truth, Marcelino’s style is far closer to Mauricio Pochettino’s than it is to Mourinho’s. 

But it seems that the Athletic boss has now joined Brendan Rodgers in removing himself from contention.

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In other news, Jose Mourinho responds when asked if he’ll sign Jack Grealish for Roma