Tottenham Focus - Deadline day may be just dead quiet
The last day of the transfer window has dawned and Sky Sports News’ Jim White will be gearing up for his bi-annual deadline day marathon. Tottenham may be the focus with Daniel Levy’s supposed penchant for last minute deals. Whether anything will actually happen remains to be seen. There has been a consistent message from Coach André Villas-Boas, one of “we are not looking for further additions”.
A striker - the Portuguese has acknowledged the risks with having so few strikers in the squad - and a defensive midfielder, with the season ending injury to Sandro, appears to be what the majority of stories have centred around. For many a striker is the most pressing need.
The loss to Leeds has increased speculation with Tom Huddlestone’s poor game in central midfield and Academy striker Jonathan Obika only having a 30-minute run out. If anything, Obika is more likely to be on the bench than start as the player will take time to integrate, to feel he belongs and build confidence.
Spurs have already made two potentially excellent acquisitions this month in Zeki Fryers and Lewis Holtby for a total outlay of less than £5m, good business by anyone’s standards considering there are always potential problems in bringing anyone in in January.
Fees can be inflated as clubs are held to ransom and Spurs - with no friendly neighbourhood oligarch - are run on prudent financial grounds. Villas-Boas would not appear willing to sign someone unless he believes they are the right person. Even then, there is the Catch 22. A player might be wanted to help push for a Champions League place, but won’t want to join, or at least not until summer, unless they can see that place is guaranteed.
Arguably any signing has to be part of the long-term planning, not just a short term hiccup. If Spurs signed a defensive midfielder, what will happen when Sandro returns? With Sandro, Scott Parker, A.N. Other as well as possibly Jake Livermore and/or Huddlestone, Spurs may have too many players for the roster.
Perhaps a clue to any final day deals is Stefan Freund’s comment on Sandro’s injury. The assistant manager, perhaps tellingly, said: “We have Livermore, Tom Carroll and Massimo Luongo from the youth team.” Spurs are reported to have a lot of potential in their Academy.
To those mentioned can be added Dean Parrett, Ryan Mason, Alex Pritchard, subject of Liverpool rumours,, Cameron Lancaster, Cristian Ceballos and more. This would not be an Aston Villa situation where youngsters are blooded wholesale. Rather players who are now at an age where they need to see a path into the first team, who can be on the bench and come on, make the occasional start if needed.
Spurs may sign someone on Thursday, but as Bill Nicholson said: “Any player coming to this club whether he’s a big signing or just a ground staff boy must be dedicated to the game and to the club.” Arguably with the Academy players that dedication is there already.
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