Nigel Pearson has admitted he thought his managerial career was on its last legs before he was asked to save Watford’s season and that the idea he would be facing José Mourinho and Tottenham on Saturday is something he could never have countenanced when he was out of work last year.
Nigel Pearson said “I wouldn’t have been thinking it was possible, of course I wouldn’t,” he said when asked whether managing at Premier League level again would, on a vacation whose weather conditions meant Pearson spent more time holed up in the pub than hiking the nearby mountains, have crossed his mind. “It really is a situation that’s come out of nothing. I was semi-retired, more or less.”
The turnaround in Pearson’s fortunes has been even more remarkable than that uptick he has overseen at Vicarage Road given that in February 2019 he was sacked as manager of the Belgian second-tier club OH Leuven. The following month he spent what was ostensibly a walking holiday in Gairloch, in the north-west of Scotland and reconciled himself to the idea his time in the dugout could be over.
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