With the recent purchase of right back Kieran Trippier from Burnley, Tottenham Hotspur have created a dilemma at the position. There are now three right backs in the fold without including Ryan Fredricks, who spent last year on loan in the Championship at Middlesbrough.
The nearest of sight can see the issue here as, due to roster limitations, clubs can only afford to carry a starter and backup at the fullback positions. On cue, the rumor mill has kicked up with the Daily Mail reporting that Spurs will now listen to offers for Kyle Walker. The word "reporting" being used liberally here, of course. Within the contents of the article it claims that Daniel Levy and company "will consider" bids made for the former Sheffield United man.
Where the article really becomes a Mail work of art with this sentence, though, when it starts to debate possible fees.
Trippier has been signed with a first-team place in mind but Daniel Levy is unlikely to want a big price for Walker with Manchester United quoted 20 million [pounds] when they made an enquiry at the start of the year.
It then goes on to say that anything above the 15 million dollar price tag that allegedly comes with Southampton's standout Nathaniel Clyne is probably unrealistic. And for the coup de grace of Daily Mailiness they throw in the qualifier that this purchase "also leaves question marks over the future [of] DeAndre Yedlin".
To be quite clear, all of this is fine and good, but none of it is reporting. This is an outlet looking at an obvious positional logjam and stating in print what all can see. Of course Tottenham will listen to bids on Walker now; they have literally purchased the flexibility to do so. Of course it throws Yedlin's future into doubt; that future was in doubt before this purchase so it stands to reason that it is even more tenuous now.
What we don't know, however, are the plans of the club. Was Maurico Pochettino happy enough with Walker's play when healthy to keep him around in hopes that he regains form? Or do they think he is Sandro 2.0, and plan to cash in on his reputation before others realize his legs are gone? Clearly, we know the club is worried enough to buy Trippier, but we do not know if it was the act of a club moving on, or simply improving depth. The reports have been flowing about a possible loan move for Yedlin to Norwich City so, based on early reports, it would seem to be the latter, but it is just too early to tell.
While unsettling as it is to have no clear cut answers at the position, we should be reminded of the club's situation at left back after the signing of Ben Davies. Danny Rose was weeks removed from a difficult season and the young left back's arrival from Swansea signaled, for many, the end of Rose's time at Tottenham. Instead of selling him, however, the club extended his contract and went to preseason with a real competition. Rose came out on top and played the best football of his career, and Tottenham had a competent left back to play in cup competitions and though Rose's various injuries. Signing Ben Davies and not selling Danny Rose was a smashing success.
Given Walker's propensity for picking up knocks, quality depth at his position is a necessity. Spurs have acquired that; and while the press may spin Trippier's transfer as unsettling, I would be quite surprised if it did not have the opposite effect in the upcoming season. There is precedent for such belief.