Coming into this summer Tottenham Hotspur fans didn't know what to expect from their team, given the activities of the past few days, it seems that fans can expect quick and under the radar transfers. Anthony Martial may not be the latter, but this rumor has certainly materialized out of nowhere. The 19 year-old Monaco striker has been on the radar of numerous big clubs for the past couple years, but reports in France now seem to indicate that he has signed for Spurs for 25 million Euro (£18 million).
Martial, dubbed the next Thierry Henry by the French press, scored 9 goals in 2500 minutes this season for AS Monaco. He went crazy down the stretch too (a la Harry Kane last year) starting 12 of Monaco's final 14 matches and scoring eight goals and adding one assist. Martial is primarily a striker, but was used all over the front line by Monaco, at times playing wide left and wide right. Martial has demonstrated excellent pace and dribbling ability in his time at Monaco and his finishing is top notch for someone so young.
Of course, there are some obvious negatives, first being the price. Martial certainly isn't a sure thing, but another good season in Ligue 1, one without Dimitar Berbatov around to take his minutes, could have seen Martial's value skyrocket. When I've seen Martial play, I've not been overly impressed by his work when his team is not in possession. I'd hesitate to tab him as lazy, but he's certainly not a dynamic presser on defense. At a shade under 6' Martial doesn't have ideal size to play as a lone striker in England, but his pace and agility, coupled with some added strength as he matures should be adequate.
This move makes a lot of sense to me. Martial is young and just about in the price range that Levy and the club have said they're looking at. Monaco, after spending big a couple seasons ago are looking to sell of some of their assets and get back into compliance with FFP. Martial is one of their prime assets and this deal would represent good value for money. Signing Martial, particularly if it happens quickly, would be a huge coup for Spurs. It would give them another young striker and a competent backup to Harry Kane, while also adding some much needed pace to the attack.