Who is Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy? Net worth, family, salary...
Following Antonio Conte’s exit as Spurs boss, we profile chairman Daniel Levy, who has now been in charge at the Premier League club for over 20 years.
Antonio Conte has become the latest head coach to depart Tottenham Hotspur under the leadership of chairman Daniel Levy, the Italian leaving on Sunday “by mutual agreement” after a relationship breakdown with the Premier League club.
More than 20 years at the Tottenham helm
Conte was the 12th full-time boss of Levy’s tenure, which has now lasted for over two decades. Appointed as Spurs chief in February 2001, the Essex-born businessman is currently the longest-serving chairman in the English top flight.
Levy, who is married with four children, is also the managing director at the investment company ENIC Group, which bought an initial 30% stake in Tottenham 22 years ago and installed the 61-year-old as chairman. In the intervening period, ENIC has increased its shareholding in the club to 85.6%.
Levy and his family control 29.88% of ENIC, while the rest of the firm is in the hands of Bahama-based billionaire Joe Lewis. That makes Lewis Tottenham’s majority owner, but it is Levy who oversees the day-to-day running of the North London club.
Levy a “negotiator with an iron fist”
An economics graduate from Cambridge University, he has gained a reputation as a chairman who takes a cautious approach to spending and, particularly when it comes to selling Spurs’ major stars, is a robust negotiator.
Just ask soccer fans in Spain, where LaLiga giants Real Madrid engaged in memorable tussles with Levy over the purchase of midfielder Luka Modric in 2012, and forward Gareth Bale the following year. Known for taking talks right to the transfer-window wire in a bid to extract the highest possible fee from suitors, he finally got Madrid to cough up £30m for Modric - and a then-world-record €101m for Bale. In a 2012 profile of the Spurs chairman, AS’s Marco Ruiz described him as a “negotiator with an iron fist”.
Sir Alex Ferguson, the legendary former manager of Manchester United, would agree with that assessment. Ferguson, who lured Tottenham striker Dimitar Berbatov to United in a deal worth just over £30m in 2008, has said that negotiating with Levy was “more painful than my hip replacement”.
Levy’s tendency to play transfer hardball also saw him face down Tottenham centre-forward Harry Kane, the club’s highest ever goalscorer, in summer 2021. Despite Kane’s belief that the pair had a “gentleman’s agreement” that he could leave the club, Levy blocked the England captain’s attempts to depart for Manchester City, rejecting a £127m offer from the Premier League champions.
How much does Levy earn at Spurs?
In February, the Telegraph reported that Levy was paid a salary of £3.265m as Spurs chairman in 2022 - up £500,000 from the previous 12 months. However, that is significantly less than the overall £7m he pocketed four years ago. That sum included a £3m bonus for overseeing the construction of the club’s current home ground, the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, which opened in April 2019 after costing £1bn to build.
In 2020, Levy made his first appearance on the Sunday Times Rich List, which ranks the UK’s wealthiest people. He placed 398th, with an estimated fortune of £329m.
Spurs fans urge Levy to “get out of our club”
During a difficult 2022/23 campaign under Conte, Levy hasn’t escaped Tottenham fans’ ire over the part they feel he has played in the team’s shortcomings. Chants of “get out of our club” have been aimed at the chairman in games where things have gone awry for the Lillywhites.
Although Spurs are currently fourth in the Premier League and could well qualify for the Champions League for the second season in a row, supporters were driven to distraction by the uninspiring soccer the team served up under the Italian. It has been a far cry from the dynamic, attacking brand of play that Spurs became known for under former boss Mauricio Pochettino, who led the club to a Champions League final during a successful five-year spell as head coach.
Levy fired Pochettino just over three years ago, and under the Argentine’s successors - José Mourinho, Nuno Espirito Santo and Conte - Tottenham have gone backwards. “Levy has made three managerial appointments since sacking Mauricio Pochettino in November 2019 and all three of them have had Spurs playing reactive, cautious, counter-attacking football,” Tottenham expert Jack Pitt-Brooke notes in the Athletic.
Levy, who in 2017 lambasted the “unsustainable” transfer outlays of other Premier League clubs, has over the past two decades frequently attracted criticism from Spurs fans for his conservative attitude to spending. That said, he did appear to loosen the purse strings a bit last summer, when Tottenham’s incoming transfers included Richarlison from Everton in a purchase worth £60m, and a £43m deal to make Cristian Romero’s loan from Atalanta permanent.
Tottenham head coaches under Daniel Levy:
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