Tottenham have recently revealed a world-record annual profit of £113-million for the 2017-18 season but that doesn’t mean they’ll be able to compete with their rivals in the upcoming transfer markets. In fact, I’d expect that Mauricio Pochettino will have to sell before he can invest too heavily in his squad.
In the same week that they revealed these astonishing profitable figures, Spurs have gleefully opened the gates to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. They have a bank loan of more than £500-million that has helped to fund the cost of the venue and, just like with Arsenal, that loan will not pay itself back.
Recent reports have suggested that Spurs would be willing to sell a number of their first team squad. You get the sense that Pochettino’s transfer budget could be defined by sales. Serge Aurier, Victor Wanyama, Erik Lamela, Vincent Janssen and Georges-Kevin N’Koudou are all potential names on the chopping block. Selling Aurier, in-particular, would help for the potential breakthrough of Kyle Walker-Peters.
However, reports of this overhaul have a touch of sensationalism about them. The Evening Standard included the likes of Kieran Trippier, Moussa Sissoko and Danny Rose on the list of potential departures. This is simply absurd. Trippier hasn’t bad the best of seasons, by his own admission, but he is still one of the division’s better full-backs. Sissoko has been a revelation in central-midfield, this season, and Rose has always provided a good alternative option for Ben Davies at left-back.
There are some players that the club is resigned to losing. Christian Eriksen and Toby Alderweireld are both heading into the final year of their respective contracts, with neither looking likely to extend their stay. Alderweireld has a buy-out clause of £25-million which means that he will gone in a flash. Eriksen will have plenty of suitors, as well, but the club could see more financial gain from the Dane, who doesn’t have such a low fixed valuation.
The partnership of Davinson Sanchez and Jan Vertonghen was a regular feature of the 2017-18 season. The likely loss of Alderweireld means that Pochettino can revert back to this pairing, allowing Sanchez to push forward with his development. People may laugh but someone like Gary Cahill, on a free transfer, could temporarily help fill the Alderweireld void. Cahill is an experienced leader and a winner, more importantly, which is something this Spurs squad is short of. Hypothetically, he would be behind Sanchez and Vertonghen in the pecking order but having that know-how in reserve could be vital in the latter stages of the season.
Eriksen is a different dilemma. For so often, the former Ajax man has been Tottenham’s creative catalyst. At 27-years-old, Eriksen is thought to be thinking of a new challenge and you cannot begrudge him that after six years at the club. His old club may well offer the solution.
Hakim Ziyech is one of the many revelations that the Dutch giants have been developing; he is part of a new wave of talent that is symptomatic of their prestigious past. Ziyech has fantastic creative awareness and immense confidence on the ball, he would be a player that would light up the stadium. Nonetheless, Daniel Levy will not sanction such transfers unless someone with Eriksen’s stature went the other way. In many ways, the familiarity of the squad is one of the club’s main strengths.
Tottenham strike me as a unit of togetherness. The manager oozes in class and vibrancy and these attitudes seep into the players. They don’t need a mass overhaul because so many of the building blocks are already in place; you don’t make the top-four for the past three, potentially four, seasons if you aren’t a serious team.
Everyone associated with the club will hope that their new home will be the psychological catalyst for trophies. They have to because the club cannot financially bridge the gap they have between their rivals. Therefore, it’s so important to retain the bulk of their tight-nit squad and to invest wisely when given the opportunity.