While it never reached a fever pitch, there was real concern that Hugo Lloris was Old Trafford-bound if David De Gea departed for Real Madrid. Among the best goalkeepers in the world, and one of the few who is devoid of Champions League football, it wasn't an outlandish claim to make. But as the summer passed, the odds of a bid decreased, and the telenovela worthy saga between Manchester United and Real Madrid ensued without mention of Hugo Lloris.
Now Tottenham's titan between the pipes has some nice things to say about Spurs. In a press conference before France's international friendly with Portugal, Hugo said this about his current club:
"A lot of things were said and written," Lloris stated. "There could have been a development there but the desired movement didn't happen.
"I have a lot of affection for Tottenham. I feel respected, I have a very good relationship with the staff and I'm ready to play the best season possible."
Over the past decade Tottenham Hotspur's dilemma has been its attempts to attract Champion's League caliber talent, without offering them the actual competition. Hugo is somewhat of an aberration. He was already France's number one and was a polished, top-tier goalkeeper when he arrived at Spurs. Yet keepers are different than their outfield brethren. Their careers are longer, their positions more stable, and their spots more scarce. Thus we sometimes see world class goalkeepers who are content to stay put.
"Between the Europa League and the Premier League, there are enough important matches," Lloris said. "In the group stage, we will have Monaco and Anderlecht who were in the Champions League last season.
"You find the top level in all competitions, even though it's of course exciting and important to play in the Champions League."
Will Lloris eventually move on? Probably. But only for the perfect fit. He highlights a good point — as Tottenham supporters clamor on about the ills of the Europa League, there are still quality sides to the competition. Monaco, Napoli, Borussia Dortmund, Schalke, and Villarreal are formidable opponents while Lazio, Marseille, Sporting Lisbon, Ajax, and Fenerbahçe are all storied clubs. Combine these European nights with the crazy competitive Premier League fixture list and players on Tottenham Hotspur's roster are being challenged at a high level.
Hugo is our captain and is easy to root for. A class act, we are lucky to have him roam our eighteen yard box. Whether he is with us in one year, or for the next five, appreciate him while he is here.