Erik Lamela. The 21 year-old inside forward that some Roma fans had pegged as the 'heir to Totti', announced today by his club as an incoming Spurs player. Anyone who's seen the youngster plying his trade on the pitch over the past few years will agree that the Argentine can bring flair and threat to White Hart Lane. But none of that is in any way relevant or important, because as we all know, Tottenham Hostpur HC is a Hair Club For Men first and a football club second. With that thought in mind, let's take a look at the assessments of the CFC staff writers of Erik Lamela's hair's chances of cracking the Spurs first team.
Ed Francis: When we were first linked with Erik Lamela earlier in this window, I can't pretend that I wasn't a little skeptical. Though still images and highlights reels on YouTube proved to me that he has some immense capacity for stylish hair grooming, I worried simply that the strength of his delicate Argentinian follicles couldn't stand up to the punishment they'd take in a more physical league like the Premiership. It's hard to pinpoint exactly what his hair does better than that of any of our existing squad members' too. His style lacks the classic rugged durability of Etienne Capoue and Mousa Dembele's closely cropped 'dos; yet it also fails on the other end of the spectrum to match up to the understated finesse of Nacer Chadli's coiffed barnet. In general, Lamela's overuse of hair wax occasionally means that his mane occasionally looks a little rough around the edges. For all of these reasons, in hair terms, I can only question whose role Erik Lamela could possibly supplant going forward for Spurs this season.
Luckily, I know as much about good grooming as I do football, so against everything I just said his hair will probably turn out to be hugely important and influential for Spurs going forward this season.
Kevin McCauley: I think that Erik Lamela needs to change his hair role to truly succeed in our system. What we're lacking is a Marek Hamsik-style mohawk. If Lamela can adopt some of Hamsik's style in his hair game, we could have a real gem.
The Sleeper's Sleep: The loss of Scotty Parker / David Bentley sweeping side-parts has me worried.
Uncle Menno: You all are forgetting that Lamela's hair is ostensibly replacing Bale's hair in the lineup. No one player's coif can possibly be expected to replace that amount of hair product. I think we all need to temper our expectations of Lamela's hair, at least initially. We need to ensure that as a fan base we're allowing adequate time for Lamela's hair to grow.
MCofA: I like statistics as much as the next guy, but without context statistics are nothing. While my colleagues discuss the hair, I want to focus on the cheekbones. No coiffure exists in a vacuum, it must be attached to a face and bring out the underlying characteristics of that face. Lamela's near-perfect bone structure gives him a classically angular visage, drawing focus to his deep-set, soulful eyes and distinct cheekbones. A haircut which extends from only the top of his skull, like the barely-faux hawk he has sported in the past, risks drawing attention away from the bone structure or worse, unbalancing his previously symmetrical appearance. I think it is notable that 90% of Lamela's SiBoT in Serie A (**) have been produced in games where Lamela's stylist allowed a little bit of volume to the coif on the sides of his head, creating a more traditional side-sweep cut in the style of a Paul Wesley. His potential is nearly boundless, but he will need a manager who can explain that within the complex demands a high-pressing, vertical-passing system, you need a haircut that works within the context of your facial structure.
Bryan A.: I think when you have the opportunity to add a young head of hair, such as Lamela's to your squad you have to do it. Sure the price is a bit high, but Lamela's hair has shown a lot more potential than say Adam Maher or Jordy Clasie. At this point Spurs have a lot of money to spend, and Lamela's hair could potentially be a superstar.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that Erik Lamela is 21. His hair still has plenty of time to grow into its potential. While Tottenham have a lot of classically-coifed players, Lamela's 'do is much more forward thinking. This is the kind of hairstyle that Spurs need if they're going to score with young fans. I know that we may not see the benefit that his hair adds to the club right now, but it's definitely one for the future.
Lennon's Eyebrow: I think it's important that we don't neglect his incredible follicular diversity. We all know that Lamela has incredible natural hair, but with the right grooming its potential is boundless. He's only 21 and he's already shown an impressive array of versatility in his styling choices. With product or without, spiked or laying flat, shaved sides or a classy part, he clearly has the adaptability to fit into whatever gap the team's overall style is missing. His hair's god-given gifts are impressive, but his real strength is in his phenomenal ability to style it in so many different ways.
Skipjack: Guys the important thing to remember is that he's only 21. He has incredible potential for growth here. Not just in terms of fullness or length, but in regards to style and substance. He already has a fantastic follical foundation to further his future on. Look at some of his colleagues like Mario Balotelli, whose hair changes his hair style like a pair of socks or Al Sharraway, who's hair could double as a balloon genocide machine or a runway for hotwheels. Lamela's almost, but not quite, blow out already shows more maturity. Perhaps more importantly it shows confidence. His hair will not only bring a swagger to Spurs but the kind of rigidity and spine we need to compete against well coiffed teams like Arsenal and Chelsea. And with a front line of Soldado and Townsend, Lamela will add some much needed flair to our folical front line.
theroosevelts: With Gareth Bale Leaving and Erik Lamalalala coming in it is important to examine what we have lost and what we have replaced it with. Gareth Bale the once stunning live action version of Jimmy Neutron has gone to seed folically speaking these last months. His current do is awful enough that one might think he the younger version of the blue haired announcer guy from the Hunger games. And in his place we bring in the youthful gentleman with ha fauxhawk that even the canceling of Queer Eye For The Straight Guy couldn't kill. It is a solid if unspectacular start to his Spurs career. It aims high but ultimately misses the mark (hi Pav!). It is his next hair style that will really make or break his Tottenham career.