Tim Sherwood’s hopes of becoming Tottenham Hotspur’s permanent manager were boosted after his team rallied to win 3-2 at stuttering Southampton in an enthralling Premier League game on Sunday.
Forgotten man Emmanuel Adebayor scored twice as caretaker boss Sherwood played the Togo striker up front with Roberto Soldado for the first time in a ploy that helped Spurs move above Manchester United into seventh spot.
Meanwhile, Everton surged to provisional fourth — pending Chelsea’s trip to Arsenal yesterday — after Ross Barkley’s perfect free-kick six minutes from time secured a deserved 2-1 win at Swansea City.
Sherwood, who took over for two games at least when Andre Villas-Boas was sacked by Spurs after last weekend’s 5-0 home thumping by Liverpool, threw caution to the wind in his bid to get the job full-time by also playing without a defensive midfielder.
The move looked to have backfired when unmarked midfielder Adam Lallana grabbed the opener for Southampton on 13 minutes with a long-range shot.
Adebayor then expertly volleyed in Soldado’s superb cross for a 25th-minute equalizer on his first league start of the season.
Spurs, who have now come from behind to win their past three away games, made a flying start to the second half and it was no surprise when Jos Hooiveld turned Danny Rose’s low cross into his own goal on 54 minutes.
Southampton made it 2-2 when Rickie Lambert tapped in following more great work from England colleague Lallana, but Adebayor sealed the win when he fired home after a ricochet on 64 minutes.
“You enjoy it when you win. I did not enjoy the first half, I thought we were poor,” Sherwood told Sky Sports. “I need to speak to the chairman about how they want to take the club forward. That’ll happen sooner rather than later I hope, as these guys need a manager.”
As well as ex-Spurs manager Glenn Hoddle, Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino has also been touted by media as a potential candidate, given his largely English side’s youthful brand of pressing soccer.
However, the Saints have now not won in six games and sit ninth, two spots above Swansea.
Bookmakers have Sherwood as the early favorite, but Hoddle has been direct in stating his interest.
“I supported Tottenham at eight years of age, I went there aged 12, left when I was 28, went back to manage — it’s in my blood and my bones. Yes, I would want to go back,” the former England manager told Britain’s Sky Sports on Sunday.
Hoddle was one of Tottenham’s greatest players, but his two years as manager ended in September 2003 after picking up four points from the opening six league games.
The 56-year-old has been out of management since leaving the Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2006, but remains popular with Spurs fans and is bookies’ second-favorite.
Former Tottenham striker Gary Lineker has called on chairman Daniel Levy to give Hoddle another go.
Another name being linked with the hotseat is Swansea manager Michael Laudrup, even though the 49-year-old Dane has consistently reiterated his commitment to the Welsh club and has no intention of leaving midway through the season.