COMMENT By Richard Parks
So public has been Jose Mourinho’s torment of Luke Shaw that Tottenham should not only sign him this summer, but could have a huge bargain on their hands.
It is inevitable that Shaw’s unhappy spell at Manchester United will come to an end following his latest humiliation.
The left-back was substituted at half-time during Saturday’s 2-0 FA Cup quarter-final victory against Brighton because, according to Mourinho, he had failed to follow his tactical instructions.
Mourinho has not been shy of telling Shaw where he is going wrong, using the media to point out the deficiencies in the player’s fitness, attitude and ability to deliver the goods at an elite club.
It appeared there had been a thaw in the freezing-out of Shaw from the United ranks following his short spell as the first choice left-back earlier this year, but the 22-year-old has started on the bench in six of the last seven league matches and is now back to treading water at United.
A summer exit would appear to be the best solution for all parties, and the player will be relatively cheap as his recently-activated one year contract extension ends in the summer of 2019.
Shaw has made just 15 appearances for United this season and has struggled to be a fixture in the team since his £27million transfer from Southampton in the summer of 2014.
Speaking on BT Sport 1 in the wake of their live coverage of United’s FA Cup win over Brighton on Saturday night, Man United legend Paul Scholes revealed he was a huge admirer of Shaw and was critical of how Mourinho had handled him.
“For me I think he could be brilliant but his manager will still find something wrong with him,” Scholes said. “It is disappointing because when Luke Shaw came you thought, ‘what a player that is and he could be the best’.
“It’s a relationship that come the summer will end. It keeps going on and on but he isn’t playing games.”
This is where Tottenham must act to snap up a player who Mauricio Pochettino got the best out of when he was a teenager with the world seemingly at his feet.
Pochettino’s man-management is like Jose of a decade ago when even the Chelsea reserves thought the world of him.
He can reignite Shaw’s career, solve the likely dilemma of replacing Danny Rose and snap up a bargain who will probably cost a third of what United paid four years ago.
It is a deal that makes sense on every level.