Vincent Janssen could’ve gone anywhere, but in the end, he wanted to go to Tottenham Hotspur after talking with Mauricio Pochettino and Daniel Levy. In a recent article in Dutch magazine Helden, Spurs’ Dutch international striker revealed that his move to North London was not motivated by his salary, but by Pochettino’s honesty, the club culture, and by the opportunity to play Premier League football.
Tottenham were one of a few clubs that were after Janssen in the summer transfer window, most notably alongside Bundesliga club Wolfsburg. In the interview, Janssen was asked what it was that made him decide on Spurs over other clubs.
"I spent a day with my Van Diemen agents and Louis Laros visiting London, and had a tour of the wonderful training ground and talked extensively with coach Mauricio Pochettino. He said, honestly, ‘We have Harry Kane but we can certainly use someone behind him, and we play Champions League. We play so many games that we want an extra striker and you are exactly the type we're looking for.’ After that visit I knew I wanted one club. And I got back the number nine, which also gave confidence.
“Of course, I had hoped that I would often play when Kane got injured. But I do not get so easily panicked anymore. I always try to win trust, and the club has given me time to get used to the Premier League."
That said, Janssen’s transition to English football has been a bit rocky. Despite being Spurs’ main striker option during Kane’s injury, he has managed only two goals in all competitions, both of them from the penalty spot. The Premier League is different from the Eredivisie, where he scored 27 goals last season for AZ Alkmaar, and pockets of Spurs fans are getting a little antsy as Janssen as seemed to struggle in recent matches.
Kane’s return may help with the pressure, which is a lot for a 22-year old playing only his second season in top flight football and who was thrust into the international spotlight probably before he was really ready. Also, the thing you can say about Janssen is that his motivation is first and foremost to improve. While he did get a healthy pay raise when he moved to Tottenham, he said that money didn’t factor into his decision when looking for a new club.
"I did not choose [Tottenham] for the money. Believe me, I could’ve gone elsewhere to earn more, even in England. The chairman of Tottenham, Daniel Levy, also said that they wanted me very much and that I should be proud to be allowed to wear a Spurs shirt."
Janssen is currently with the Dutch international team preparing to play his Tottenham teammates Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen as the Netherlands host Belgium in an international friendly on Wednesday, before traveling to Luxembourg for a World Cup Qualifier on November 13.