Former Tottenham Hotspur owner Alan Sugar prepared for Spurs’ opening game of the Premier League season by taking to Twitter to pass comment on the club’s new manager, Australian Ange Postecoglou

Alan Sugar, the former Tottenham Hotspur owner

Alan Sugar, the former Tottenham Hotspur owner

Former Tottenham owner Alan Sugar thrust himself into the centre of another social media storm as Spurs prepared to kick off the post-Harry Kane era in the Premier League.

Five years on from comparing Senegal’s World Cup stars to ‘guys from the beach in Marbella’ and labelling them ‘multi-tasking resourceful chaps’ - comments which he later apologised for - Sugar took to Twitter to comment on Spurs’ new manager, Ange Postecoglou.

The Australian, poached from Celtic in the summer after two years of sterling work in Scotland, was taking his new-look side to Brentford for their opening game of the new season.

And Apprentice host Sugar elected to remark on Postecoglou’s debut in distasteful fashion, declaring: “I think there is a lot to say that after many years of managers who struggled speaking English we now have Ange who we can at least understand.”




Needless to say, Sugar’s comments on “managers who struggled speaking English” were wide of the mark. Since parting company with their last permanent English boss in 2013 - Tim Sherwood - Spurs have appointed a number of foreign coaches as their permanent manager - all of whom have boasted impeccable English language skills.

Be it long-time boss Mauricio Pochettino, who led the club to a Champions League final and is now in charge of Chelsea, Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte, both Premier League winners, and also Nuno Esprito Santo, hired after an excellent four-year spell at Wolves. All have worked for other Premier League clubs and thrived - certainly not struggling due to problems of communication.

Cristian Stellini, who replaced Conte on an interim basis last season having been his compatriot’s No.2, may have only lasted four games as acting head coach, but he also undertook interviews and press conferences himself just fine, before being replaced for the final games of last season by Ryan Mason… an Englishman.

Sugar’s remarks led to accusations of racism and xenophobia by fellow Twitter users.

After his Senegal comments, labelled “shocking” and “vile” by BBC journalist Babita Sharma, Sugar backtracked: “I misjudged my earlier tweet. It was in no way intended to cause offence, and clearly my attempt at humour has backfired. I have deleted the tweet and am very sorry.”

He told Mirror Online at the time: “It was meant as a joke. Someone sent me the picture and I tweeted. People know I have fought against racism for years and I sincerely didn’t think this could be interpreted in any other way other than funny.

“However, due to the comments on Twitter I pulled it down.”

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That was not the first time that Sugar had been caught in a race storm on social media either. Police probed a post in 2013 - still available today - in which he uploaded a photo of a child, apparently of Chinese origin, crying. He tweeted: “The kid in the middle is upset because he was told off for leaving the production line of the iPhone 5.”

Police said it had investigated a complaint but said “no criminal offences” had taken place following a complaint.

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