Aside from the record transfer sale of Gareth Bale last summer, Tottenham’s recent transfer market activity has been ambitious and forward thinking. Daniel Levy appears to have a clear vision for the club as he looks to shake off the unenviable title of great underachievers that Spurs seem to carry year on year.
Premier League form has been patchy, but if Spurs want to have a tilt at the top it will be about building upon rather than dismantling what they already have.
With this in mind, entertaining offers for the club’s most coveted stars would be in my view pretty fruitless. Naturally big money offers are always tempting, but if Spurs want to progress they need to change recent habits and hold onto their most valuable assets. Such resolve may well be tempted during the current window.
According to Le Parisien, PSG consider Spurs’ England international Kyle Walker to be the ideal replacement for the injured Christophe Jallet and will make their move later this month. Monaco’s interest has been known for some time but, with no concrete bid made, they could lose out to their title rivals.
Whether or not the 23-year-old ex-Sheffield United star would be happy to trade London for either Paris or Monaco is a separate issue, and really Spurs shouldn’t be allowing these advances to get anywhere near that consideration.
Walker is a man that divides opinion amongst the Spurs faithful, for some a total liability and for others an undoubted talent. Based on this seasons form, an ever improving and maturing Walker should be placed in the latter category. He is now miles ahead of his understudy Naughton in terms of development, and fans will be glad to see the Englishman adding defensive solidity to what is already a classy attacking game.
Given the fraught search for a left back at Spurs, fans will be well aware of the limited pool of top level wing backs in the world game. Whereas with midfielders you may be able to replace someone quite quickly, in the case of Walker you would be struggling to re-invest the money you make on the player effectively. When we talk about big money for full backs, we are talking £20m mark, and given Spurs’ recent reluctance to sell stars I cannot see this offer even registering with Levy.
Tottenham have for too long been given the tag of a selling club, and if they truly do have ambitions of being something more than thar they need to end this habit fast. The sales of Carrick, Modric and Bale may well have looked good on the balance sheets, but when it comes to footballing success you just have to keep your best players. You can’t place Walker in this bracket yet, but in the future there is a real chance that he could become a leading figure for both club and country
Selling Walker would be a loss anyway, but actually Spurs’ attitude to any advance is a lot more important that just that. It sends a real message out to other clubs.
What happens when Barcelona come swooping for Sandro or Madrid look to snare Paulinho?
They may be underperforming, but Spurs undoubtedly have a plethora of talent on their books and really this January window may just set an important precedent as to how the attitude has changed on a boardroom level.
Do Spurs really have the stomach to put football first and bank balances second?
If Levy is really serious this approach shouldn’t even be a matter of price, flatly refusing to even enter into negotiations about star names would for me represent a huge step up in the club’s transfer policy.