Overlooked by Tottenham & Newcastle but Fonseca remains determined to achieve Premier League coaching dream

Paulo FonsecaGetty Images

Former Roma boss Paulo Fonseca has told GOAL that he has not given up on his dream of managing in the Premier League despite missing out on jobs at Tottenham and Newcastle.

Fonseca was close to joining Spurs before talks broke down late in the day, and he was then linked with Newcastle following the sacking of Steve Bruce in October 2021.

The 49-year-old has had a number of other offers since leaving the Italian club, but is waiting for the right opportunity and would jump at the chance to work in England.

Why does Fonseca want to work in England?

"The football in England is no longer what they used to call 'kick-and-run', today you have the best teams and the best football in the world," he told GOAL.

"I was very close at the beginning of the season to Tottenham but these things didn't happen like they didn't happen with Newcastle, but let's see in the future, I believe it will happen.

"Everyone would like to work in England, to live the fantastic atmosphere you have in England. It's a different culture, even from the supporters, the way they live and love the game, it's a different thing you cannot find in another country."

How close was Fonseca to joining Tottenham and Newcastle?

Fonseca looked certain to take over at Spurs but a disagreement with Fabio Paratici over his attacking style of football ultimately cost him the job.

Portuguese compatriot Nuno Espirito Santo took over but was replaced by Antonio Conte following his sacking in November 2021.

Fonseca was also among the candidates to take over at St James' Park before Newcastle opted for former Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe, who appears to have steered them to safety.

What has Fonseca been doing since leaving Roma?

Fonseca, who is in Glasgow this weekend to coach a team at Rangers' Weekend of Legends 150th anniversary celebrations, left Roma at the end of last season.

Despite turning down a number of offers he has enjoyed a year away from the game, although he admits he is desperate to get back into coaching if the right opportunity comes along.

"I never stopped in my career before, this was the first season and I I have to confess it was very positive," he added. "You have an opportunity to see, to learn from other coaches, to watch other teams and so to stop was very positive for me."

Escape from Ukraine

The former Shakhtar Donetsk manager, who has a Ukrainian wife and child, was forced to flee from the country following the Russian invasion last month.

Fonseca has friends and colleagues that have remained in the country and has called on more to be done to help the people of Ukraine.

"I was in Kyiv - my wife is Ukrainian and I have a three-year-old so it was really difficult. But it continues to be much more difficult for the people there," he said.

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"I have many friends who cannot leave the country and the situation is really difficult. I don't know how long the world can allow this tragedy because we see it on the TV, but after we switch off and we carry on with our lives, but the people continue to suffer.

"They are very brave, they want to continue to defend their country but the situation is really difficult."

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