Don't expect Tottenham Hotspur to have a quiet summer when the transfer window opens. Spurs' manager Mauricio Pochettino indicated his desire to strengthen his squad ahead of next season's Champions League campaign in pre-match comments before Sunday's season-ending match against Newcastle.
"We need to improve our squad -- this is very clear. Me, our supporters, our players, our squad -- we are all agreed that we need to improve. It's a different level to play in the Champions League.
"To play in the Champions League, the Premier League and the cups, it's important to have a very good balance. We need to improve our squad.
"Replicating this season again is our challenge. For that, we need to improve our squad, to reduce the gap. The Champions League demands a lot of energy, more than the Europa League.''
Tottenham notoriously struggled this spring when forced to choose between pushing for the Premier League title and competing at full strength in the Europa League. Pochettino chose the Premier League, ran out a B-side against Dortmund, and got flattened over two legs. With Spurs assured of a spot in the Champions League group stages next season , the stakes are only higher and the challenges much greater if they also want to compete for a Premier League title. That, says Poche, will require an improved first team squad.
What that improvement will look like is anyone's guess. Spurs are in the hunt for another striker to back up (or compete with) Harry Kane, and could also use reinforcements in the center of midfield and possibly in defense. Spurs' modus operandi has shifted to focusing mostly on younger players, and Pochettino hinted that the club will continue to look towards youth for the future.
"I think today at Tottenham, when you analyse the squad, you need to add not only the football side but the human profile. You have some limitations. But it's true that younger players fit better than older players. This is how our squad is different today than maybe a few years ago."
Spurs have been strongly connected with Ligue 1 strikers Michy Batshuayi and Alexandre Lacazette, as well as a host of other younger players on the continent and in the lower leagues of English football. Meanwhile, current Tottenham players Tom Carroll, Ryan Mason, Nabil Bentaleb, and Nacer Chadli have all been linked away from the club.
The summer transfer window opens on July 1.