Is youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu. Yes, Christmas has come and gone in a blur of food, alcohol and, in my case, flu. And while some had received the gifts they had hoped for from Santa and his posse of merry elves, many are hoping for a late flurry of presents when the New Year kicks off.
The Transfer Window re-opens a little over six days time and with it, the rumour mills begins its running for a month or so with this club being linked with that player up until the clock ticks over midnight on Sky Sports News, Jim White seemingly about to spontaneously combust with sheer excitement. Tottenham have been particularly quiet in recent windows, with no less than eight senior players making the move to White Hart Lane over the last 18 months. However, below are the three signings To the Lane and Back are hoping Spurs make over the next 31 days of January.
Jan Vertonghen – It may not seem it at the moment, but by gosh could Spurs do with a new centre-back. Younes Kaboul has been a rock prior to his suspension and while Michael Dawson is nearing a full return to fitness, both the English international and the Frenchman are all too similar to play together.
With Sebastien Bassong edging closer towards the exit door, Ledley King and William Gallas are the duo that need to be starting at the back, either as a pairing or with the aforementioned Kaboul or Dawson. However, with King’s knee problems and Gallas’ age, the North Londoners could do with a new ball playing defender either next month or in the summer.
Reports began to surface no more than a month ago that Jan Vertonghen was set for a move to White Hart Lane when the window re-opens in January. A £10m fee had been mooted for the Ajax captain, who has long been linked with a move away from the Amsterdam Arena. Inter Milan, Barcelona and North London rivals Arsenal have all been linked with his signature but, is speculation is to be believed, he is Spurs bound.
At 24-years-old, time is certainly on his side and, even more impressive considering his young age; he already has 35 caps for the Belgian national team, adding two goals on top of that. Similar to Thomas Vermaelen in style of play, minus the injuries of course, adding Vertonghen to Spurs could well provide the basis for a solid back-four, especially if Kaboul is to continue his meteoric rise to prominence in the defence.
If the reports of a done-deal are true, then it will be a major coup for Harry Redknapp and Daniel Levy while his addition will only strengthen the squad further. A young-ball playing centre-back, with a mean left foot to match, is exactly what Spurs need to help push on and achieve further success and with Vertonghen, the potential is there for the Belgian and Kaboul to form a mean defensive partnership that can last over the next few years.
Junior Hoilett – If the 1-0 win over Sunderland and 1-1 draw with Chelsea showed anything, it is that without either Gareth Bale or Aaron Lennon, or both, Spurs are pretty useless going forward. Without the two providing pace on the flanks, we go pretty narrow, making it easier to defend against our free-flowing football.
Hoilett has been linked with a move away from Blackburn Rovers since September amidst reports the young Canadian hopeful is refusing to extend his current contract beyond the summer. January will be the final chance to make any money off the 21-year-old, providing he doesn’t opt to ink a new deal.
The 21-year-old has been somewhat of a bright spark for Blackburn in an, ultimately, dreary campaign for the one-time Premier League champions. But, now Rovers must decide if they are to sell their prized asset or run the risk of losing him for nothing next June. His talent is impeccable and the youngster is sure to be a star in the future.
However, should Spurs make a move for him next month; chances are he won’t be a guaranteed starter, not with Bale and Lennon occupying the left and right flank, respectively. But, the recent injuries to the duo showcase the need for more strength in depth for wide men. While Niko Kranjcar and Steven Pienaar can do a job on the wings, a player with pace further suits the ‘liquid football’ that has made Spurs such an exciting prospect while the chance to join a top four hopeful may be too much for Hoilett to turn down.
Leandro Damiao – For all those that have played FIFA 12, you would have surely witnessed the ‘powerhouse’ video the accompanied it. Every team does need a powerhouse and while signing Emile Heskey may well be a complete no-go for more reasons than can be listed, the Brazilian equivalent could well fit the bill for a new striker at White Hart Lane.
Leandro Damiao was heavily linked with a move to Spurs over the summer and without stumping up the fee needed to bring him to London, the lack of activity could well come back to bite them. The Brazilian has enjoyed a hugely successful six months for Internacional and made his mark on the national side which has seen his stock, and price-tag, significantly rise in the latter half of 2011.
Pre-season goals over Barcelona and AC Milan certainly didn’t hinder his development and, in fact, saw the European giants formally announce their interest in the youngster. However, Spurs hold all the cards courtesy of the commercial relationship between the two sides, the same relationship that bought current Spurs hero Sandro to the club 18 months ago.
Spurs may well have Emmanuel Adebayor in the ranks but if no permanent deal can be arranged for the Togolese man, they are going to need a power striker to lead the front-line in the next season. Leandro certainly fits the bill of a classic number nine with a modern twist. Excellent in the air, knows where the goal is but is equally great with the ball at his feet, at 22-years-old he certainly has the opportunity to become one of the worlds better strikers.
Many now believe, however, that the asking price may be too high for Leandro after an excellent six months but if Spurs are to continue their rise to prominence, the cost of a potential game-changing player shouldn’t be an issue especially with the possibility of being within four points of Manchester City should maximum points be picked up between now and the re-arranged Everton fixture.
So, these are the three signings I would love to see announced on the Spurs website at some point over the next month or so and are three players that could easily bring further glory to White Hart Lane. While Vertonghen and Hoilett are more likely arrivals than Leandro, this optimistic Spurs fan can hope to see all three in the white shirt come February 1st.