Tottenham: Going Forward

I think it's fairly obvious by now that we have a few problems, no matter what some people (a la Sherwood) might insist; we probably need some new players and we definitely need a new manager. This is how I see it: next year we'll have a real advantage and could pull a Liverpool. Our failure to qualify in the top four and dwindling hopes of fifth place could be the launching pad for a title shout next season. Some changes, however, must be made.


The Problem:

Tim Sherwood doesn't know what he's doing. He has a host of fixations, Bentaleb and English players among them. He was quoted, recently, as saying that Young and Welbeck are 'great players with great potential', while Ronaldo is a 'flash in the pan.' He thinks that Sandro, one of the team's most popular players is 'not good enough' and despite our eternal woes that flow from the position of left back he insisted in January that there was 'no need to strengthen the squad.' He clearly has no idea. His achievements include playing Dembele as a right winger, mistaking the identities of Chadli and Eriksen and reversing their positions, and stating "I don't believe in tactics or formations." Enough said.

The Solution:

Ideally, we'd get van Gaal. Right now, though, that looks increasingly unlikely and we should look elsewhere either be it for a backup should he choose United or for a different first choice. None of us wants Moyes. The major managers in Europe right now are Ancelotti, Guardiola, Simeone, Klopp, and Mourinho, with Rodgers rising. Each of these is really building something with their current club and would have no reason to come to Tottenham. However, call me a madman but I see another possibility. I can only pray that Levy reads this, because this, to me, seems the best solution. Zinedine Zidane is probably being paid more as an assistant manager than Tottenham could afford to pay a head coach, but Zidane has expressed desire to become a full-fledged manager, with AS Monaco showing interest in him. Zidane was both Mourinho and Ancelotti's assistant manager at Real Madrid, and surely he must have learned something from them; let's not forget that Mourinho's career started as van Gaal's assistant. Even if not, he has a very intimate knowledge of the game and is nobody's fool. Besides, if nothing else, he could compete with Pardew on the touchline.


When I fall asleep, I see a world. I see a world where Soldado leads the league in goals and Lamela in assists, maybe clocking in around sixth or seventh goal-wise. I don't want to heap pressure on them, but these are two players of fantastic quality. Soldado has had miserable luck on the pitch and the misfortune of his wife's miscarriage earlier this season quite possibly had a part to play; Lamela's been plagued with injuries and his brother's kidnapping earlier this season probably had an effect on his performance as well. I really think that Spurs should persist with these two players and I'm certain that they'll adjust well to the Premier League. People don't notice that Soldado, in a Europa League game, scored a hat trick, or that Lamela has played with flashes of real quality despite his lack of a Premiership goal so far. As to the other players--we should sell Vertonghen, loan out Bentaleb, sell Livermore, sell Lennon, and keep loaning out Carroll, Pritchard, and Falque. The players that I've tagged for sale are players that I can't picture, under any circumstances, hoisting a major trophy. I would also consider selling Dembele, though that depends on what kind of manager is brought in, and possibly selling Paulinho on the basis that he's lazy and often seems uninterested. We need to get Holtby back as soon as possible. Holtby can, I think, play the role of deep playmaker in a Gerrardian way: getting the ball from the defense, taking it to the midfield, then make long, accurate passes out to the forwards. Sigurddson is a fantastic substitute, but much like David Ginola, he has wonder-days and absolutely pathetic days, and he should remain a substitute and a starter in simplistic FA Cup and League Cup matches where we want to rest other players. If we can't keep Lloris then we should get as much as we possibly can for him and buy Stockdale, putting the remainder of the Lloris windfall aside for other purchases. The players we should buy are

CB: Astori/Veltman,

LB:Shaw/Digne/Ricardo Rodriguez (in that order of attempts),

Midfielders: Konoplyanka/Lallana

Forwards: Rodrigo/Deulofeu

These are some pretty starry targets. Astori's club, Cagliari, have set a price of eight million pounds for him, and I expect Veltman would come to roughly the same. Shaw looks like he's going to cost around thirty million, which is pricey, but I think it's achievable and should be our priority (given Rose's issues) if the Lloris saga ends unhappily for us. Konoplyanka and Lallana both look like twenty millions to me, while Deulofeu could go for around ten or fifteen with Rodrigo costing probably double that. So if we went for all of my first choice picks, that would set us at almost ninety million. This looks highly unlikely unless Lloris goes. On the other hand, all second choices plus Shaw would come to just over seventy which seems a bit more realistic. I genuinely fear that we'll lose Hugo and I think that that should be our course of action if we do. I would even be prepared to scratch Konoplyanka and Lallana if we could rake in Veltman, Shaw, and Rodrigo or Deulofeu.

In conclusion, some things need to change, and regardless of whatever else happens, we need to get rid of Sherwood and replace him with either an internationally-acclaimed manager or Zidane/someone in a similar position.


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