After 20 years of living in Arsenal’s shadow, it was Tottenham who had become top dogs in North London, it was Pochettino who fuelled the dream of a £1billion state-of-the-art stadium and led them to a European Cup final.
Years of being branded “Spursy” for their flaky failures replaced by a manager with passion, who got the best out of his players and gave the supporters wonderful nights they will never forget.
The overwhelming reaction from Spurs fans when news of Poch’s sacking broke was shock and disappointment.
It was pretty obvious things had been going wrong, but that does not make things any easier when the unthinkable actually happens.
And when the dust settles, they will know they have potentially wasted a glorious opportunity by allowing the best manager they have had in decades to leave the club.
Pochettino’s working relationship with chairman Daniel Levy is at the heart of the split as they clearly had very different visions for the club moving forward and what it would take for them to take the next step and win major trophies.
Pochettino wanted to rebuild his squad and his regular cryptic messages – like hinting he would leave if Spurs won the Champions League – highlighted all was not well.
Poch saw this season coming and feared if they did not react then they would fail. And that is what has happened.
Levy has always been a shrewd operator, made Tottenham the club it is today and built the new stadium.
But set against that, Levy has clearly not backed Pochettino and troubles behind the scenes have affected performances.
Pochettino worked wonders on a budget, taking Tottenham from being a Europa League team to being European heavyweights.
There was no trophy, but no-one will forget Champions League nights at Manchester City and Ajax last season.
Pochettino is regarded by those in football as one of the best young managers in the game. He had rebuilt Tottenham, taken them to the brink – and now the club have let the moment pass.
It is the biggest gamble of Levy’s stewardship because ultimately he has sacked the fans’ favourite.