Tottenham Hotspur chairman Daniel Levy has always been renowned for his negotiating ability and a fine example of that has to be Jake Livermore.
The former academy graduate played 38 times for Spurs in his penultimate season in north London before moving to Hull City on loan.
Considering he played such a regular role throughout the 2011/12 campaign, it may have been a tough decision to let him go but, in reality, the following year saw a drastic drop-off in game-time under Andre Villas-Boas.
In fact, it would’ve been far too easy to bring him back in – after all, the Tigers reached the FA Cup final that year as Livermore played a crucial role in midfield, and he was still only 23 at the time.
Football.London once dubbed him a player with ‘undoubted potential’ at Tottenham, whilst his former manager Harry Redknapp was a huge fan. The ex-Spurs boss said: “You couldn’t get a better lad than Jake. He’s a fantastic boy with a great attitude and he’s a really good player. If you had a club full of people like that you’d have a great football club.”
Several seasons later, the midfielder would go onto join his current club West Brom for a reported £10m, which would undoubtedly have had the Spurs chairman feeling a little bitter, but he ultimately played a blinder in letting him go when he did.
The 31-year-old midfielder is now worth just £2.7m according to Transfermarkt, despite coming full circle and ending up back in the Premier League.
In reality, this level of football is above his actual quality, so Spurs haven’t missed out whatsoever. His Baggies side are second from bottom and are staring down the barrel at an instant relegation to the Championship.
Livermore has arguably been one of Albion’s worst performers, too.
As per WhoScored figures, only one other ‘regular’ player at The Hawthorns as managed worse than his average rating of 6.18; and despite losing his place in the starting XI under Sam Allardyce, he still sits top for fouls per game (1.8), which merely emphasises his struggles at this level of football.
Levy played it smart in selling Livermore when he did, he’s just never hit the heights with which he was once touted.
AND in other news, Imagine him and Reguilon: Spurs could strike gold with £45m-rated beast…