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N’Koudou transfer to Spurs held up by Marseille front office changes

Marseille got some new executives and changed the terms of the deal for Georges-Kevin N’Koudou and Clinton N’Jie.

Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester United - Premier League Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images

We haven’t talked about Georges-Kevin N’Koudou or Clinton N’Jie for a while now, and that’s mostly because there hasn’t been anything to talk about. Both transfers, which appear to be inextricably linked, have been stuck in transfer realm limbo for a couple of weeks now with very little information or updates being leaked to the press.

This weekend, however, Lyall Thomas came out with a very detailed article that gave what amounts to an explanation as to why this whole protracted saga hadn’t been wrapped up a long time ago. To quickly summarize, Olympique Marseille now has a new president, a new sporting director, and several new board members. All of them have new ideas about how the club should be run — which is good because Marseille is a financial tire fire at present — and there’s been a fair amount of goalpost-moving going on.

So in short, Spurs are still working on completing a deal that will bring N’Koudou to Spurs and send N’Jie to Marseille on loan, but it’s essentially being renegotiated with new terms. Both sides want to make the deal, but the process is ongoing. When will it be completed? Who knows! Isn’t silly season fun?

The other interesting tidbit to come out of this article is an assertion from Lyall that Mauricio Pochettino still really likes Clinton N’Jie and thinks he has a great deal of potential. That implies, to me, that this is a financial decision and not a personnel decision.

But whatever, I’m really kind of done overanalyzing this. Unless I’m completely misreading the situation, and I don’t think I am, Georges-Kevin N’Koudou is coming in short term as a reserve midfielder. Certainly Poche thinks he has the potential to develop into a starter, and possibly a star, otherwise he probably wouldn’t be signing him. However, there’s really no evidence to suggest that N’Koudou is the kind of player who can waltz straight into the starting lineup. He needs time to come in, pick up the nuances of Pochettino’s system, and get Pochettino-fit. Even when he signs, it’s unlikely we see him in action for a while. At least initially, he’s a backup.

Look, depth is good. I’m all for quality depth signings, especially young ones with high ceilings that can come in and do a job and turn into the starters of tomorrow. It’s also great that we can spend time obsessing over who’s going to be our star of the future rather than angsting over that key signing that we need to be competitive in the league.

But N’Koudou coming in and N’Jie going out doesn’t seem to have the level of importance that say, the Saido Berahino transfer had at the time. In what’s turning out to be one of the more relaxed Tottenham transfer windows I can remember in a while, I’m kind of over stressing out over the fact that this hasn’t been completed.

So let’s sign N’Koudou! Great! I hope this gets done. But until I see him holding up a Tottenham shirt, I’m more or less tired of worrying about whether or not we get this one over the line in the near term.