Ange Postecoglou, the head coach of Tottenham Hotspur, could set a Premier League management record when his team hosts London rivals Fulham on Monday.
The Celtic treble winner has made an impressive start to life at Tottenham, whose fans had previously become dissatisfied with the pragmatic tactics of Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte.
Postecoglou has overseen Spurs’ unblemished start to the Premier League season with a high-pressing aggressive approach, with six victories and two draws from their first eight games.
Only Arsenal are also yet to suffer defeat in the 2023-24 top-flight campaign, and Tottenham entered the second international break of the season sat top of the rankings, above their North London rivals on goals scored.
Results on Saturday have bumped Spurs down to fourth place, although they will return to the summit with a win on Monday night, which would move them onto 23 points from their opening nine contests.
Such a scenario would also cement Postecoglou’s name in Premier League folklore, as no manager has ever achieved as many as 23 points from their first nine games in the hotseat.
The current record holders are Guus Hiddink and Mike Walker, who both managed 22 points from their opening nine Premier League matches as managers, with the latter achieving the feat with Norwich City in the inaugural 1992-93 season.
Walker’s Canaries won seven, drew one and lost one of their first nine games in the competition and eventually finished in third place in the table, 12 points behind champions Manchester United.
Meanwhile, Hiddink’s short-lived Chelsea reign in 2009 began with an identical record, where the Blues’ only defeat in that sequence coincidentally came at the hands of Tottenham.
By already amassing 20 points from eight contests, Postecoglou has guided Spurs to their best-ever start to a Premier League season, and not since their double-winning campaign of 1960-61 have they performed as well at this stage of proceedings.
Furthermore, Spurs’ only dropped points in the 2023-24 Premier League season have come in London derbies, playing out a pair of 2-2 draws with Brentford and bitter foes Arsenal.
Postecoglou also revealed that Brennan Johnson might be in with a chance of recovering from his hamstring concern, but Rodrigo Bentancur, Ryan Sessegnon, Manor Solomon, Ivan Perisic, Alfie Whiteman and the suspended Yves Bissouma remain out.
Fulham head to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium aiming to end a 10-year run without a Premier League win against the Lilywhites, who last lost a top-flight game to the Cottagers at White Hart Lane in March 2013 courtesy of a winner from former striker Dimitar Berbatov.