Why Tuchel’s Harry Kane mistake isn’t the only reason Sir Jim Ratcliffe might like Southgate or Potter at Man Utd instead

THOMAS TUCHEL missed his attempt to take over at Manchester United after his Champions League substitution error.

Bayern Munich boss Tuchel’s call to eliminate Harry Kane and Jamal Musiala at 1-0 five minutes into the semi-final second leg gave the Germans no threat of attack or outside ball.

Thomas Tuchel is one of the names in the running for the Man Utd jobCredit: Rex
Harry Kane has been withdrawn with Bayern Munich leading Real MadridCredit: Getty

His decision backfired when Real Madrid substitute and former Stoke striker Joselu scored twice to seal a last-place finish against Borussia Dortmund at Wembley on June 1.

The substitution was criticized by former Bayern midfielder Owen Hargreaves, who fumed: “You can’t take Kane out. This is the biggest call ever. How can you make this call?

Afterward, Tuchel insisted Kane was injured when he added: “His back was gone, he couldn’t continue.”

Yet the sight of the England captain and Musiala leaving the Bernabeu pitch ended any realistic way of hurting Real at Bayern and emboldened Carlo Ancelotti’s 14-time kings of Europe.

Now, former Chelsea manager Tuchel, who will leave Bayern at the end of the season, will consider the next step in his managerial career.

Red Devils co-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe seems to have decided what everyone expected of him: Erik ten Hag must simply go. The question is: who will enter?

United need a boss who can handle the pressure of expectations at England’s biggest club.

Someone who can manage the egos of a team full of players who think it’s okay to blame everyone for their mistakes. And who can build a winning mentality.


It wasn’t Tuchel’s fault. Manuel Neuer, outstanding during the first 85 minutes of Wednesday’s draw, suddenly dipped his gloves in olive oil.

Either the Polish linesman signaled too early to cancel out Matthijs De Ligt’s late equalizer.

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Tuchel’s career record, at Dortmund, PSG, Chelsea and Bayern, shows he can tick all those boxes.

Silverware at every club and nine trophies in total – including Champions League glory at Stamford Bridge – as well as Munich winning the Bundesliga last season.

Yet if Ratcliffe and Sir Dave Brailsford want someone easy to deal with, then the combustible and endlessly demanding Tuchel may not be that man.

Compare him with Graham Potter and Gareth Southgate, two men who would be far more accommodating to the demand to adapt to the ‘United plan’.

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The German won 36 of 59 matches in charge for Bayern, but oversaw the end of their domestic dominance.

He won the Champions League with Chelsea in 2021 and has won league titles in Germany and France.

Graham Potter’s tenure as Chelsea manager was a disaster as it lasted just 31 matches.

But exploits with Brighton won him many fans and he enjoyed equally successful spells with Swansea and Ostersunds.

His failure at Stamford Bridge could cast doubt on his performance at the highest level.

Southgate’s club experience was accompanied by a spell at Middlesbrough between 2006 and 2009 which ended in relegation.

But he rebuilt his reputation with the England Under-21s and has since won 59 of 93 matches for the senior team.

With a World Cup semi-final and a European Championship final under his belt, as well as a long spell in a notoriously intense position, he brings big match experience.

There is ZERO There is a good chance that, in the same situation at this summer’s Euros, Southgate will withdraw his skipper.

Brailsford’s previous incarnation at Team Sky and Team GB Cycling was all about “marginal gains” and remaining calm under pressure, not panicking when key moments arrived.

Tuchel had his key moment in Madrid. Brailsford and Ratcliffe could choose to weigh everything and determine that it would be expensive.