Despite a huge influx of television money and the anticipated, and well-deserved, backing of Andre Villas-Boas, don't expect Tottenham to bring in big-name signings this summer. Overall, don't look for many transfers in or out of the club.
As fans, we have a tendency to think we know what is best for our team. Many times, our passion for football, keeping up with multiple teams and leagues, YouTube highlight reels, and the allure of FIFA and FootballManager makes us hyperactive and overspeculative during transfer windows. We beg for THFC to make moves - we know exactly which moves need to be made and who would fit the roles perfectly. And consequently, we wonder with amazement about why needs aren't being met.
There are a few simple reasons why this transfer window will be another underwhelming and frustrating one for Spurs fans. The reasons may be shockingly plain, maybe down right obvious and overstated, but they are valid reasons nonetheless.
1) What is changing already from last season to this upcoming one?
Basically, Spurs are already "transferring" four players into the senior squad this season. With Younes Kaboul and Sandro's return from injury, Tottenham has two important and influential players returning to the 18-man squad as long as the physicians have done their work correctly and injury rehabilitation has been successful. With AVB already stating he would only carry four CBs into 2013, Kaboul's hopefully successful return will spell the end to transfer rumors for CBs for the senior squad. Moreover, Sandro's return to the midfield should mark the return of Tottenham's midfield dominance in most matches. The defensive midfielder's all-around influence will be a welcome sight once again for Villas-Boas and should alleviate concerns for transfers into the midfield.
The third player "transferring" in is Andros Townsend who has returned from a successful loan spell at relegated Queens Park Rangers. The fleet-footed wing player brings much needed depth and creativity out wide to possibly start or back-up Aaron Lennon and Gareth Bale. Townsend shined in a dismal QPR starting XI as he made 12 appearances, scoring 2 goals and contributing 1 assist. What is more impressive, however, is Townsend's other statistics: of EPL players with at least 10 appearances, Townsend had the second most successful dribbles past defenders per game with 4. Surprisingly, Townsend was also 24th-best in tackles per game (2.9) of players with at least 10 appearances, coupled with 1.3 interceptions per game. What is certain is that Tottenham are getting a player back who has certainly flashed some impressive numbers and highlights, albeit in a 3rd of a season's appearances. Still, these numbers are very encouraging for a 21 year old who is still learning the nuances of the Premier League game. If Andros stays with Tottenham and out of further trouble (following his four-month ban from all footballing activities) , he could be a very valuable piece of a Spurs Champions League run in 2013.
Also returning from a successful loan who could be an instant contributor in 2013 for Tottenham is Danny Rose from his Sunderland loan. Rose's loan spell was an epiphany for the Black Cats as they struggled to compete even in a down year for the EPL. There has been no shortage of discussion of how good Danny Rose could be for Spurs on this site, but what we can all see is he took another step forward this season.
These four players provide a welcome boost to Tottenham's starting lineup and depth and could mean a diminished splash in the transfer pool.
2) Those many expect to leave this window could actually end up staying.
Tottenham has already said goodbye to two players in William Gallas and David Bentley, but who else could be going? Obviously, much of the decision-making as to whom will be transferred out of the club depends on bids and interest from other clubs. There have been rumors for many players including Scott Parker, Benoit Assou-Ekotto, Tom Huddlestone, and others, but really, how many will leave? All three of these guys are veterans who still bring certain skill sets to the side while simultaneously being unable to command large transfer bids from other clubs. The only certain transfer I see out of the club right now is GK Heurelho Gomes, who has flashed enough talent to be a some-what value player. All other speculative transfers out, no matter how much we want and can see upgrades, seem kinda unlikely at this point. Even adding a starting striker is a speculative thing right now for the club as both Jermain Defoe and Emmanuel Adebayor struggled with injuries during the season but seem to have AVB's support. I still think a striker or two will be added, but I don't think it will be a blockbuster snag like Soldado or Mario Gomez.
3) Stepping back to look at the bigger picture, this is still a club that desires to be run well financially.
We're always linked to players, but in the back of your mind, aren't you really questioning how much we'll actually do? We have always been a cautious club looking for transfers at the right price, which is a source of pride for many fans. That's why I still think it is unlikely to see big splashes in the transfer market. Even though we need to add more to "appease" Gareth Bale's ambition and compete in the league, we just came off a record EPL points haul of 72. Do you really think the club is scrambling to throw out more money on the team with that kind of return on money?
Overall, I think we need to add LB depth, a striker or two, and another quality midfielder. It would be nice to upgrade the depth from Scott Parker and Kyle Naughton and see some more playing time for Gylfi Siggurdson, Lewis Holtby, and Tom Carroll, but I really don't think the club sees these as dire needs.
Believe me, I agree with you - we need to add more to compete with the other contenders in the Premier League. But I'm trying to look at it from a club executive standpoint. Do you think they're really anxious to go out and spend all that TV money on more players? Methinks they will just collect their paychecks, put some of the money towards the new stadium, and sign a couple of players to appease the fans.
But to me, it looks like finding a 5 dollar bill in your pocket kinda summer than a brand-spanking new promotion and higher pay grade kinda transfer window. Maybe a possible appointment of Franco Baldini as Director of Football could change things...but I'm not holding my breath.