Tottenham were the standout spenders in the summer transfer window. Buoyed by the riches of the Gareth Bale deal, they smashed their own transfer record three times over in a summer of unprecedented expenditure by the North London club.
The Premier League outfit have been decent if not always mesmerising this term and while AVB will be pleased with the business he has been able to do so far, he will also be aware of the need to keep the momentum going.
Tottenham are a team in transition and if you cant accept that then you are only likely to be disappointed in the near future. The likes of Soldado, Lamela and Paulinho are all world-class faces who will all key to the AVB ‘project’, but whose importance shouldn’t be judged on a handful of games. Spurs are a club who should be looking towards success in the next 2-4 years rather than pinning all their hopes on glory next May.
The combination of AVB, Levy and Baldini has enabled Spurs to establish what I consider to be one of, if not the deepest squad in the Premier League. The so-called second-string side would hold their own against almost any team and are consistently proving in the Europa League and League Cup that they have the ability to keep the club fighting on all fronts.
For Spurs though this isn’t just a question of bedding in and giving themselves a bit of time to settle, I still think the club are one or two players short.
The main area of concern are the wing-backs, where the club possess two exceptionally gifted young talents but lack any real experience. Kyle Walker and Danny Rose could well become two of the best wide men in the country, but for a club like Spurs you just cannot afford to weigh all this expectation upon them. Potential injury and loss of form should press AVB towards reinforcing this area come January. It wasn’t particularly surprising that the club were linked repeatedly to both Federico Balzaretti and Fabio Coentrao last summer, and it is my expectation that they will again go into the market for a left back primarily.
The name on most people’s lips is Leighton Baines, who continues to impress at both domestic and international level. Disciplined in his defensive positioning, Baines also has a wand of a left foot which when you consider the firepower that Spurs possess in attack, wouldn’t really go amiss. But this isn’t just a question of bringing in someone to replace Rose, it is also someone for the youngster to understudy and I cannot see anyone better suited to this role than Baines.
A big question though is how can Spurs finance these kind of deal, considering Baines alone will set the club back upwards of £15m?
The thing a lot of people forget is that Spurs effectively broke even in terms of transfer spending over the summer, the sale of Bale as well as Parker, Dempsey and Huddlestone left the club on sound financial footing. A clearance of a lot of unnecessary deadweight from the wage bill has actually seen the club increase it’s spending capacity rather than reduce it ahead of the January window. Add to this the rumoured investments of reclusive owner Joe Lewis, and you can start to imagine Spurs spending just as significantly come the turn of the year.
So what else do Spurs really need?
A series of injuries have ravaged the career of defensive stalwart Younes Kaboul whose offer of a new contract appears largely up for debate. Dawson whilst a club legend is still defensively suspect, and these two reasons alone point to the need for a ready-made defensive investment come the spring.
The striker issue has been a seemingly endless debate with most happy to accept Soldado as first choice, but many still concerned with Adebayor and Defoe as replacements. I personally think Adebayor if fit and firing is as potentially destructive as any frontman in the League, but still AVB will no doubt look to reinforce. Overtures have already been made to Loic Remy and I fully expect Spurs to look to re-enter the striker market in one way or another.
I doubt we will see the level of summer spending replicated again from Spurs this January, but the club do need to approach the window with exactly the same level of intent.
This time round it will be more tweaks than a revolutionary overhaul, but that said this window could be just as influential for Spurs going forward as the last.
Do Spurs need to keep the transfer momentum going?
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