It was a tough season for Tottenham Hotspur. They sold their star player for a world record £85million fee, which was spent on seven top players to get Spurs back into the Champions League.
But things didn’t go to plan, especially for Andre Villas-Boas, who was sacked after the club’s 5-0 defeat at home to Liverpool.
Tim Sherwood stepped in, but with his future constantly in doubt, the club never truly excelled under his management, eventually finishing 6th, 10 points behind 4th placed Arsenal.
There’s to be more change at White Hart Lane this season. Mauricio Pochettino has left Southampton for London, and is ready to get things back on track. But one big decision he has to make straight away is deciding the future of Roberto Soldado.
The Spaniard was arguably the biggest disappointment out of all of Tottenham’s signings last summer, due to his impressive goal scoring record in La Liga. Soldado scored 59 goals in three seasons for Valencia before his €30million move to Spurs, where he managed to hit the back of the net just six times. A terrible return that cost Spurs greatly.
Pochettino has to decide if he’s going to keep Soldado as his number 1 striker, or keep him at all. So here are 6 alternatives to the Spaniard for the new boss to consider.
The Belgian scored 19 goals for Aston Villa in his debut season in the Premier League, and after rejecting speculation from Spurs last summer, stayed at the Midlands club to add a further 10 to his name in an injury-hit second season. The 6ft 2inch striker is a fantastic target man, ready to hold the ball until midfielder reinforcements arrive, or to turn and unleash a ferocious and precise strike on goal.
An aerial threat and danger with the ball at his feet, Benteke would surely add goals for Spurs. Scoring 29 goals in two seasons at a struggling Villa with limited service, you imagine the Belgian would excel at White Hart Lane, in both the Premier League and Europa League. The only downside with Benteke is that he is a similar. The only downside is that he is fairly similar to Emmanuel Adebayor, who suddenly jumped into the first team under Tim Sherwood. Pochettino may not want two big strong strikers together.
Bayern Munich’s deadly finisher isn’t expected to stay at the Allianz Arena for next season. With Robert Lewandowski now arriving at the Bundesliga champions, the Croatian forward isn’t expected to sit happily on the bench under Pep Guardiola. Despite scoring 33 goals in two seasons for the Bavarian side, 18 of which were last campaign, everyone is predicting Mandzukic to depart, with a move to England on the cards. Manchester United have been linked with the striker, but whilst they have plenty of options already, Tottenham could move in for the European star.
Mandzukic scored twice from two games in the World Cup as Croatia failed to get out of the group stage, as once again he showcased his deadly finishing. The 28-year-old is a born finisher, and could easily handle the pressure of being Spurs’ number 1 goal threat. Strong and threatening in the air, the Croatian can finish with headers from crosses and with the ball at his feet, and is a must-consider for Pochettino at Spurs.
Another powerful striker, Doumbia has been linked with a move to the Premier League for some time now, but has yet come to England to showcase his talents. The 26-year-old bagged 18 goals for CSKA Moscow last season, two seasons after hitting 28 goals in the Russian league. Strong and good at holding the ball, the Ivorian could prove to be a great target man for Spurs. With 7 assists to his name too, Doumbia is happy to provide for his teammates too.
Strong and fierce, Doumbia has already proved himself against English sides, scoring twice against Manchester City in last season’s Champions League. The Ivorian tapped home a cool and calm penalty to double his tally after making a darting run behind the City defence before producing a composed finish. The 26-year-old is ready for the Premier League, ready to attack English defenders and ready to get Spurs into the Premier League.
Holland’s World Cup hero in the knockout stages of the Brazil tournament, Huntelaar is a powerful finisher with an eye for where the back of the net is. Despite an injury-hit campaign, the Dutchman scored 12 goals in 18 league games for Schalke, as well as a screamer in the 6-1 defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League. He may be a bit older than Spurs’ usual targets at 30-years-old, but Huntelaar’s experience could be an extremely useful asset at White Hart Lane, showcasing why he has scored 35 goals from 63 international appearances.
The Schalke striker reads the game well, knows when to be in the penalty area braced for the cross, and when to hunt for long range efforts outside the 18-yard box. The forward has scored 59 goals in 4 seasons with Schalke, and didn’t have the worst of times during brief spells for AC Milan and Real Madrid years ago in his career. A first move to England could be on the cards for Huntelaar, with the chance to change Spurs’ fortunes around.
One of the names most linked with Tottenham, Swansea’s Wilfried Bony is already being talked about as a future Spurs player just 12 months since he moved to England. After a slow start, the Ivorian eventually kicked into life, scoring 17 goals in his debut season. A lively striker, Bony proved his talents at the World Cup too with 2 goals from 3 appearances in Brazil. Relatively quick, the 25-year-old knows when to make those darting runs through on goal, as well as enjoying a long range effort too.
A big reason fans liked Bony was his obvious hunger for goals. The Ivorian is always on the move, prowling for an opportunity to add to his tally. With a year of Premier League experience now under his belt, could it be time for Bony to move to London and propel Spurs into the Champions League places? You wouldn’t put it past them if he was to join.
Linked heavily with rivals Arsenal, Spurs could pull off a great steal by signing the Frenchman before Arsene Wenger gets the chance. Remy spent last season on loan at Newcastle, where he transformed the Toon. Without him, Newcastle looked lost and without any end product. But with him on the pitch, they were always a threat. Remy bagged 14 goals for the Magpies, showing brilliant pace as well as the ability to finish strongly. Remy reminds you of a classic number 10, a bit like Michael Owen. Quick feet with a natural eye for goal.
Spurs fans would like him to be the new Robbie Keane or Jermain Defoe, and there’s no reason why Remy couldn’t be. His pace makes him a threat on the counter, and with QPR expected to be unable to hold on to the Frenchman, Spurs could recruit 27-year-old to boost their goalscoring threats next season.