Alex McLeish has accused the Tottenham squad of lacking a “winning edge” following Jose Mourinho’s sacking on Monday.

The former Scotland manager, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted some players have failed to hit the expected heights at Spurs this season.

Tottenham confirmed Mourinho’s departure on Monday morning, three days after a 2-2 draw with Everton.

The result at Goodison Park left Spurs seventh in the table after 32 games.

They currently sit five points off the top four, although their pursuit of Champions League football has taken a twist.

News of Mourinho’s exit came just a day after Spurs were named as one of the Premier League clubs who had signed up to take part in the European Super League.

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McLeish admitted it was a “strange” time for the Lilywhites to announce the 58-year-old’s departure.

However, he insisted the players had let their manager down.

Asked why he thought Spurs had chosen to get rid of Mourinho now, McLeish told Football Insider assistant editor Russell Edge: “God, who knows? Right before a cup final, it seems a strange one.

“We can speculate that something’s happened inside. We don’t know if Jose Mourinho’s opposed to the Super League, whether that’s a factor or not, or whether it was in Daniel Levy’s mind for a few weeks. Something maybe accelerated it over the last couple of days.

“It looks like to me that some players just weren’t up to the kind of level that you would expect for Tottenham’s investments.

“Also, the fact that they were in a European final a couple of years ago. Getting in the Champions League seems to be the be-all and end-all for every one of the top clubs.

“It’s easy to blame the manager. I’m not throwing the players under the bus but it seems they didn’t have that winning edge to them. They looked kind of shaky at moments.”

In other news, Levy is “desperate” to appoint a manager dubbed “95 per cent the same as Guardiola”.