This is the time of the offseason, just ahead of the summer transfer window, when clubs start to make decisions on which fringe, development, and youth players they wish to keep and which they are ready to let go. Clubs are required to submit a “retained and released” list by the 10th of June that lists with whom they are cutting ties.
Ahead of the release of that list, Tottenham Hotspur decided to cut five youth and development squad players, releasing Filip Lesniak, Tom McDermott, Joe Muscatt, Charlie Owens & Zenon Stylianides.
We can confirm the departures of Development Squad players Filip Lesniak, Tom McDermott, Joe Muscatt, Charlie Owens & Zenon Stylianides. pic.twitter.com/Q6FcdmYARm— Tottenham Hotspur (@SpursOfficial) June 9, 2017
None of these are huge shocks, except for perhaps Filip Lesniak. The 21-year old Slovakian midfielder was on loan this season at Slovan Liberec, a Czech Republic team. Going out on loan to the Czech Republic is usually a pretty strong indication that you’re not in the plans of the current first team manager.
However with Spurs in a bit of a midfield crisis at the end of the season, Mauricio Pochettino actually gave Lesniak not only a spot on the bench, but his Tottenham first team debut in games against Leicester City
and Hull City. Not only that, but he looked pretty decent against Leicester, picking up an assist.
That led some to speculate that Filip might actually have a place in Spurs’ roster next season. Well, so much for that. Lesniak will now be on the hunt for a new club, but he certainly didn’t hurt his prospects with his performances for Spurs at the end of the season.
Muscatt (FB), McDermott (GK), Owens (MF), and Stylianides (MF) all came through the academy and are all 19 years old, but were judged to not have what it takes to crack through the first team at Tottenham. That’s a harsh reality of professional football, but it should not be taken as a negative. Most if not all of the players that don’t cut it at Tottenham will go on to have successful careers elsewhere, either in the lower levels of English football or in other leagues.
The full listing of Tottenham’s “retained and released” list will be posted no later than tomorrow, Saturday, June 10.