Tottenham Hotspur are looking a bit short in defense and they may or may not actually do something about it. Speaking at an event on Monday, Andre Villas-Boas suggested that Spurs could potentially buy no new defenders.
"We have options in defence. We still have Naughton, we have Kaboul coming back, we have Zeki Fryers, who did very well in pre-season. I think we are covered. We might buy but we haven't decided yet, bearing in mind Fryers' progression."
There's something about this quote that makes me believe that AVB's just trying to get everyone to stop asking questions about whether or not Spurs are targeting a defender, as opposed to giving an entirely honest answer to the question he was asked.
"We might buy but we haven't decided yet, bearing in mind Fryers' progression" is a crazy thing to say if he means it, since it's August 19. Fryers is going to progress enough or take a big enough step backwards between now and September 2 that it might change the minds of AVB and Franco Baldini?
Fryers' last preseason performance was promising enough that I'm not going to panic if we hit September 3 and Spurs don't have a new central defender, but he's played more left back than central defense, and he didn't look good in the Under-21s last season. AVB sees Fryers train every week and knows more than we do, but I don't think it's unfair for fans to express doubts about the defense.
Then there's the left back situation, which seems very up in the air. Based on Benoit Assou-Ekotto's Twitter feed, it seems highly unlikely that he's going to play for Tottenham this season. Danny Rose had a solid season at Sunderland last year and looked fine against Crystal Palace, but he played in a much different tactical setup under Martin O'Neill and Paolo Di Canio.
Are William Gallas, Steven Caulker and BAE only going to be replaced by Fryers and Rose? If so, Spurs have willingly downgraded in defense.