There’s only one more date on the fixture calendar — on Sunday, Tottenham Hotspur will close out their season with their final “home” match at Wembley Stadium against Leicester City. With top four guaranteed and everything else just gravy, it’s time for everyone to start looking ahead to the offseason and to what will come in the 2018-19 Premier league season.
That means in part figuring out what the heck to do with Toby Alderweireld. With Toby heading to the World Cup this summer and looking like he’s already out the door, Mauricio Pochettino and Spurs have some decisions to make, but Poch said in a pre-match press conference that he and Toby will start the progress of hashing it all out next week.
“I think now we need to focus on finishing in the best way. Finishing third is the most important thing now. Then from Monday we will talk about all that is going to happen next season. That is the moment. Now is not a moment to talk about individual situations.
“Of course [we will talk next week]. We are going to be ready from the moment we finish the season to talk about the important things for the next season, of course.”
So that’s pretty boilerplate and it’s not like we should expect any sort of a real answer from Poch either now or in the future, but let’s not kid ourselves: from here on out any further discussions are probably going to center on how to get Toby the best possible deal on his transfer, and preferably to a club that Spurs won’t have to play two times a year in the league.
The looming World Cup means that a decision on Alderweireld’s future will likely either happen very quickly after the window opens or won’t happen until after Russia 2018. Hopefully this is all done sooner rather than later, because nobody wants a lingering outgoing transfer SAGA and it’d be nice to have that money in hand in order to focus on who might be coming in to replace him.
And yes, before you say anything, there is a non-zero percent chance that Toby decides that he was wrong and he’d love to sign a nice bumper contract extension at Spurs and everyone is happy... but don’t count on it.
Poch also talked a bit about his own future, and when asked if he’s planning on sticking around he said he absolutely, positively will be at Spurs next season... unless he isn’t.
“What a question eh? It’s not my... you know I still have three years on my contract. No point in talking about that. Only you know in football that everything can happen. No one is sure in their job, but I have a three year contract. Like I told the media in Spain after the game on Wednesday, they asked me about my contract and about what happened at some clubs, I told them: ‘Look I have a three year contract and they need to agree with Daniel.’
“I don’t know, but today it is 100% [chance I stay] because I have a three-year contract here. But tomorrow I don’t know what is going to happen.”
Thanks for the clarity, Mauricio.