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Who Spurs need to sign to bounce back to the top four

It has been a very indifferent season for Tottenham Hotspur this season. After last season’s exploits and a year where the club broke the monopoly, albeit temporarily, of the top four, expectations were high that they were going to achieve the same again.

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It has been a very indifferent season for Tottenham Hotspur this season. After last season’s exploits and a year where the club broke the monopoly, albeit temporarily, of the top four, expectations were high that they were going to achieve the same again. Things, however, didn’t go to plan. Too many dropped points to ‘lesser’ teams at home and on the road have seen Spurs drop to sixth in the league and with a resurgent Liverpool routing Fulham 5-2 last night, it looks as though European football won’t be back at White Hart Lane until late 2012 at the earliest.

While the team are left to lick their wounds and think of what could have been, now is the time to begin the re-building process at Tottenham Hotspur. Streamlining one of the Premier League’s largest squads will not be easy but, when the deadwood is gone, it will allow for the players of similar ilk to Luka Modric, Gareth Bale and Rafael Van der Vaart to take their places.

 

Goalkeepers

 

It is a shame to be saying this but Heurelho Gomes is becoming indefensible. His save from Charlie Adam’s spot kick on Saturday was one he shouldn’t have made but he performed his Jekyll and Hyde trick once more from the resulting corner, firstly by allowing a simple catch to fall from his grasp thus giving Gary Taylor-Fletcher the impetus to latch on to the resulting drop before bundling the Blackpool man over for the Seasiders second penalty in as many minutes.

 

Fortunately for the Brazilian, his blushes were spared by Jermain Defoe’s 89th minute equaliser but his mistakes haven’t been forgotten throughout the season. Both of Cristiano Ronaldo’s goals in the Champions League quarter-final, Frank Lampard’s ‘goal’ last week against Chelsea and Didier Drogba’s goal at White Hart Lane at the end of last year are just a few of the mistakes the goalkeeper has made over the course of the season.

 

He makes the saves he shouldn’t be making but continuously makes the most basic of errors that have cost his side points this year. In fact, he is joint top with West Ham’s Rob Green for the most blunders that have resulted in goals from open play this year. While Redknapp has leapt to the defence of Gomes, his patience must be wearing thin for his number one. A top class keeper is needed is Spurs are to challenge for serious honours next season and one of either Maarten Stekelenburg, Allan McGregor and Shay Given would prove more than adequate as a replacement should Gomes be shown the door.

 

As for his back-ups, Carlo Cudicini and Stipe Pletikosa, well the former is more than likely to stay on at Spurs as a number two for at least another year until a young England hopeful will take his spot on the bench while the latter has failed to challenge for the number one spot and, after making only two appearances all season in the first team, admitted his move to Spurs was a mistake.

 

Defenders

 

Starting with the full-backs, fans can expect to see Alan Hutton shipped out in the summer. Despite showing a glimpse of what he can do, the former Rangers man has failed to make the right back spot his own often playing second fiddle to the less than spectacular Vedran Corluka. With Younes Kaboul able to cover in the position with the Kyle’s, Walker and Naughton, both showcasing their capabilities and the two of them expected back at White Hart Lane ready for the new season, you can expect Hutton to be made available for transfer.

 

As for the left back scenario, fans have often criticised Benoit Assou-Ekotto and his ability to play the position. However, the Cameroonian international has been one of our best performances this season while the 3-3 draw at home to Arsenal has drawn plaudits from fans and pundits alike. Yet, with BAE currently sidelined with a hamstring problem and Bale missing the remaining three games with an ankle injury, the lack of depth in that position has been made blisteringly aware to everyone. Youngster Danny Rose did well to step into left back when asked on Saturday but isn’t a long term solution. Expect either of the Kyle’s to challenge BAE for a starting spot next season.

 

In the central of defence, question marks have been raised about the long term futures of both Ledley King and Jonathan Woodgate. The former has missed a substantial chunk of the season after groin surgery while the latter has played a total of thirty-minutes of first team football in the previous fourteen months. With Woodgate’s contract set to expire in the coming weeks, it would be difficult to Redknapp to justify extending his deal beyond June unless he is on a pay-as-you-play deal.

 

However, with the squad looking to be thinned out and more money made available for new players, the easiest option would be for both to have their contracts cancelled. It is a massive shame for both players as, injury free could well have been two of England’s top defenders and when both are available for selection, have formed a formidable partnership in the Spurs defence. Yet while Woodgate maybe released from the club, King will undoubtedly be offered a role on the coaching side of things.

 

With that aside, Spurs still have four centre-backs to compete for the two starting spots. Michael Dawson, William Gallas, Kaboul and Sebastien Bassong all have the ability to start for Spurs and help them in their quest for another top four finish. However, with Gallas approaching his mid-thirties and Bassong eager to move for first team football, it may be the case that Redknapp will be in the market for another centre back. Roma’s Philippe Mexes is out of contract at the end of the season and could well be persuaded that his future lies in England’s capital.

 

Spurs have also been linked with a host of defenders from the Premiership with Richard Dunne and Gary Cahill two names mentioned as possible signings for the club. Blackburn Rovers’ Phil Jones is a prospect that Redknapp may well want to add to his ranks and the potential for him to succeed with a host of top clubs linked with the youngster and while he may not be rushed into first-team football with Gallas and Dawson the starting pairing, Jones, like Cahill, could be a player that lines up next to Dawson in the future.

 

Midfielders

 

When it comes to the wide men, the natural starters would be Bale and Aaron Lennon. Both have the ability to cause full-backs problems and with them on the pitch, can stretch defences. While Bale has been courted by some of Europe’s elite, he has affirmed his commitment to Spurs and wants to remain with the club despite the lack of Champions League football. As for Lennon, reports have suggested that Redknapp would be happen to get rid should the opportunity presents itself. A lack of playing time, prior to Bale’s season ending injury, fuelled rumours that Redknapp had lost patience with the England winger, reportedly quoted that he failed to listen to orders and hasn’t improved as much as Redknapp would have liked.

 

However, Redknapp would be foolish to get rid of Lennon. He still has room for improvement and would likely come back to haunt Spurs should he be sold to a rival. In terms of back-up, the likes of Rose, Andros Townsend and Stephen Pienaar are more than adequate replacements should either, or both, become injured.

 

However, it is a shame that one man will miss out and is likely to be sold in the summer; Niko Kranjcar. Signed from Portsmouth eighteen months ago, the Croat has been a consistent performer in the Spurs shirt and was part of the team that won the club their initial top four spot. Scoring the winning goals against Bolton and Sunderland this season has done little to persuade Redknapp that he should be part of the starting XI and the signing of Pienaar in January would have done little to persuade Kranjcar that his future lies with Tottenham.

 

Fans can expect a Kranjcar exit this summer and he is likely to be joined by Giovani Dos Santos and David Bentley in bidding farewell to White Hart Lane. The Mexican arrived from Barcelona hyped as the new Ronaldinho yet failed to make an impact in a Spurs shirt, making ten appearances and spending more time out on loan to Ipswich, Galatasaray and Racing Santander then in and around the first team.

 

Like Dos Santos, Bentley has had a torrid time in a Spurs shirt, often missing out in the starting XI to Lennon. A loan spell at Birmingham has seen him return to first team football but his chances of the same at White Hart Lane may well be slim at best.

 

Moving into the centre of the pitch, Tottenham pack an abundance of talent with the likes of Tom Huddlestone, Luka Modric, Rafael Van der Vaart, Sandro, Wilson Palacios and Jermaine Jenas all vying for a starting spot in the centre of the park. However, with Sandro, Modric, Van der Vaart and Huddlestone the four main contenders, it remains to be seen whether Palacios and Jenas will remain at Spurs in the future. Both have had bit-part roles to play during the season and at least one of them is likely to be sold in the summer especially with Jake Livermore, Dean Parrett and John Bostock all set to re-join the first team in the summer and, should West Ham be relegated, Scott Parker would look likely to join up with the squad at Chigwell in time for the new season.

 

Another loanee, Jamie O’Hara, is also set to move on once the transfer window re-opens again with first team football his priority having spent a majority of the past two seasons on loan with Portsmouth and Wolves respectively after failing to hold down a starting spot with Spurs.

 

Strikers

 

Up top, Spurs have struggled for goals on a regular basis this season. With thirty-two goals between Roman Pavlyuchenko, Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe and Robbie Keane, fans can expect a huge overhaul up front. Keane is definitely set to leave the club having found playing time hard to come by at Tottenham while two of either Defoe, Crouch or Pavlyuchenko will most likely be shipped out.

 

With Redknapp opting for a 4-4-1-1 formation, a striker that can successfully play the role of lone striker is a must. It has been made no secret that Daniel Levy placed bids for five Spanish based forwards in January with none wanting to join up with Redknapp and co. at White Hart Lane.

 

The club have been linked with Porto duo Falcao and Hulk, Athletic Bilbao target man Fernando Llorente, Espanyol’s Pablo Osvaldo, a return for former striker Dimitar Berbatov currently of Manchester United and even a move for Chelsea’s Didier Drogba. Any of the above would be an improvement on the current crop of strikers at White Hart lane especially if Van der Vaart is utilised as the man in the hole behind him.

This is where the biggest changes will occur in the current first team especially with top four the aim for next season. A few minor changes elsewhere and the club are ready to re-break the top four and take back the position that Manchester City won off them last night.

In – Mexes, Stekelenburg, Parker, Falcao, Hulk, Loach, Cahill

Out – Gomes, King, Woodgate, Jenas, Palacios, Keane, O’Hara, Hutton, Kranjcar, Dos Santos, Pavlyuchenko, Defoe, Bentley

 

 

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Tottenham join the chase for this promising Spanish midfielder

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Tottenham are interested in Spanish playmaker Dani Olmo

Tottenham have joined the race to sign Spanish playmaker Dani Olmo from Dinamo Zagreb. (h/t Football London)

According to Croatian outlet Sportske Novotsi (h/t Birmingham Live), Tottenham have now joined the likes of AC Milan, RB Leipzig, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Barcelona and Leicester City who are interested in signing the 21-year-old.

The report also claims that a bid has been made for his services by an unnamed Premier League club worth £21.3 million.

Dani Olmo
Dani Olmo helped Spain win the U21 Euros during the summer (Image credit: Getty)

The 21-year-old surprised everyone with his decision to swap La Masia for Dinamo Zagreb in 2014. He has since thrived in Croatia, making 124 appearances scoring 34 goals. (h/t Whoscored)

Primarily a central attacking midfielder, Olmo is also capable of playing on either flank and also as a forward if necessary. His versatility will be a huge addition to a Spurs side seeking both dynamism and inspiration.

The youngster has been in good form this season with 8 goals and 7 assists in 22 games. His performances have seen him win the awards for best player and best young player in the Croatian First Division

With Eriksen looking likely to leave, Olmo will not only be an excellent replacement but will also secure a key position in the Spurs squad for the decade.

Spurs look likely to make Giovani Lo Celso’s deal permanent. Dani Olmo looks likely to be a better player with a higher ceiling than the Argentine.

The midfielder is likely to prefer a move to Barcelona and Spurs will do well to secure the player given his demand.

More Tottenham News

Mourinho is interested in signing Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic
Islam Slimani emerges as Tottenham Hotspur target
Midfielder Tanguy Ndombele has hinted at a return to action

Olmo has won 1 cap for the Spanish national team. He scored on his debut in the 7-0 win over Malta.

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Italian giants submit increased €15m bid for wantaway Tottenham star

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Inter Milan make new €15 million bid for Christian Eriksen

Italian giants Inter Milan are set to increase their bid for Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen. (h/t Guardian)

Inter have already had an earlier bid of €10m plus add-ons rejected last week. The Italians are now set to increase their bid to €15m plus add ons.

Antonio Conte is keen on signing Eriksen to bolster his side’s bid for a first Serie A title since 2009 (h/t Guardian). The club are believed to have already agreed on personal terms with the 27-year-old Danish star.

Christian Eriksen

Christian Eriksen, who has been the lynchpin of the Spurs midfield, looks a forlorn figure intent on leaving the club this month.

The Dane, who joined us in the summer of 2013, has gone on to 304 appearances in his time here. He has contributed to us regularly qualifying for the Champions League and also to the run to the final in 2019.

The fee mentioned above is a steal for someone of Eriksen’s quality. With the midfielder’s contract expiring this summer, Spurs would do well to sell him in the January transfer window than lose him for a free in the summer.

Inter seem keen on reinforcing their team using Premiership based players as they look to overtake Juventus in Serie A.

Ashley Young has already signed on for the Nerazzurri with Chelsea duo Oliver Giroud and Victor Moses set to follow. Eriksen would surely be the ace of the lot, given his age and talent.

More Tottenham News

Mourinho is interested in signing Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic
Islam Slimani emerges as Tottenham Hotspur target
Midfielder Tanguy Ndombele has hinted at a return to action

Eriksen has been a crucial player for Spurs and has been one of the team’s lynchpins under Mauricio Pocchettino. The 27-year-old has given Spurs years of brilliance and has earnt the right to look for a new challenge elsewhere.

Given his contribution to Tottenham’s rise as a formidable force in the 2010s, we hope he gets us top dollar this January that can aid in Mourinho’s rebuild.

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Out-of-favour Tottenham star could be on his way to join Turkish giants

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Galatasaray are interested in midfielder Victor Wanyama

According to Turkish publication Takvim (h/t Football London), the Turkish side are keen to sign Victor Wanyama.

The Kenyan midfielder has been on the fringes of the first team and has made just 4 appearances for Tottenham this season. The appointment of Jose Mourinho too has not changed matters with the 28-year-old struggling to get proper game-time with the North London club.

Victor Wanyama

With Mourinho preferring not to use the midfielder even after the injuries to Tanguy Ndombele and Moussa Sissoko, It appears that Wanyama’s time at Spurs is numbered.

Galatasaray manager Fatih Terim is keen on signing the midfielder with Mourinho is likely to sanction a loan deal.

Time to say goodbye.

Wanyama signed for Tottenham in 2016 and quickly established himself as an important player in the Spurs setup. He made 47 appearances in his first season in London.

Knee problems in 2018 and 2019 have severely impacted the midfielder’s appearances. The signings of Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele have pushed him further down the pecking order. It is fair to say that the Kenyan’s career at Spurs is over and he will be better served moving.

Wanyama’s contract at Spurs expires in 2021 and Spurs should look to sell him permanently than let him go out on loan. At 28, the midfielder still has a good few years in him and will be a solid option for prospective buyers.

More Tottenham News

Mourinho is interested in signing Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic
Islam Slimani emerges as Tottenham Hotspur target
Midfielder Tanguy Ndombele has hinted at a return to action

The Kenyan has represented his country 60 times scoring 7 goals. He was a part of the Tottenham squad that lost to Liverpool in the final of the UEFA Champions League in 2019.

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Spurs boss Mourinho keen on signing Serbian ace from La Liga giants

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Mourinho is interested in signing Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic

Jose Mourinho is interested in signing Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic int he January transfer window. (h/t Express)

The Portuguese manager sees the Serbian international as an ideal replacement for the injured Harry Kane. Tottenham are short of strikers following Kane’s injury and are expected to make a move for a player this month.

The lack of a specialist striker could make the difference for Spurs in the top four race with less than half a season to play. It is debatable if Tottenham could have taken more against the likes of Liverpool and Watford if they had a specialist leading the line.

The latest name to emerge in the Spurs merry go round is Luka Jovic. The Serbian has failed to impress following his €65million move to the Spanish capital. Jovic has made 18 appearances for the Los Blancos and has scored just 1 goal and 1 assist. (h/t Whoscored)

Luka Jovic

According to Spanish outlet Defensa Central (h/t Express), Mourinho hopes to use his good relations with Real president Fiorentino Perez to leverage a deal for the striker.

An expensive mistake?

Jovic is undoubtedly a good player and has his best years ahead of him. He is unhappy at Real Madrid and could be open to a move, but it begs the question if Spurs should spend big on a player who will play second fiddle to Harry Kane once the striker returns.

Having cost €65million just a season ago, Real will expect to recoup as much of the fee as they can. Having seen Spurs balk at paying 30 million for Krzystof Piatek, it’s hard to see Levy pay more Jovic.

It makes sense for us to pursue a loan deal for the striker this month and continue to search for a financially viable alternative we can sign in the summer.

Such a deal should give Spurs the player we need, Jovic the playtime he seeks and if all goes well, Real also get an in house option to be Karim Benzema’s successor.

More Tottenham News

The 22-year old had scored 27 goals in 48 games for Eintracht Frankfurt before moving to Real. Tottenham will hope that the player can rediscover his scoring touch with a fresh start in North London.

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