Niko Kranjcar: arguably the steal of the season

KranjcarSince Harry Redknapp has returned to Tottenham he has raided his former club Portsmouth for a couple of players, and Jermain Defoe in particular has already proved his worth for Spurs. But little was made of Croatian midfielder Niko Krancjcar’s move to White Hart Lane and he hasn’t made a huge impression at the North London club either until now. With fellow Croatian international Luka Modric out injured, Harry decided to bring him to Tottenham and there have been plenty of opportunities for Kranjcar and there will continue to be. So could Niko Kranjcar who cost Spurs just £2.5 million turn out to be the Premier League steal of the season?

The elegant midfielder is still somewhat of an unknown entity and his unpredictable nature can work against him as well as in his favour. Kranjcar like the rest of the Spurs team had a field day against Wigan on Sunday, and the Croatian chipped in with a goal and an assist, which should greatly boost his confidence. The 25 year old has plenty of experience under his belt for a player of his age and he is arguably yet to reach his peak and produce an extended run of good form. Even though he played 100 games for Portsmouth, inconsistency still remained a part of his game at the South Coast club, and you feel he has more to give. But can Kranjcar become a vital player for Tottenham this season, or will he to some extent continue to flatter to deceive?

Kranjcar’s transfer from Portsmouth to Tottenham in the summer couldn’t have come at a better time for the player himself, and Spurs fans will be pleased with that bit of business as well. Moving from a club struggling at the bottom of the Premier League to a team pushing for Champions League places, Kranjcar has been reunited with Harry Redknapp, who is a manager who obviously rates the midfielder very highly. Alongside his excellent technique, Kranjcar has great vision and provides a creative outlet for Spurs, but one criticism sometimes thrown at him is that he needs to feature more heavily in games rather than drifting in and out. Tottenham need him to provide the Spurs strikers with a significant number of chances on a regular basis, but with Modric’s return not too far away, will Kranjcar be able to keep his place in the team and become a key asset for Tottenham?

Kranjcar’s eye-catching performance against Wigan showed Spurs fans what the Croatian is capable of and his intelligence on the pitch and speed of thought will excite supporters. He gives Tottenham a different option compared to the speed of Lennon on the other wing, and his skill and creativity will trouble many defences. When Kranjcar is in the mood as he was on Sunday he is a joy to watch and is a great player, but do those occasions come far too infrequently? If he can reproduce his best form on a regular basis, Kranjcar will undoubtedly be one of the buys of the summer, and even if he doesn’t the transfer fee of £2.5 million still represents an excellent bit of business for Spurs. But will Krancjar provide Tottenham with that extra dimension needed to propel them up the Premiership and turn out to be the steal of the season?