With players now off with their national teams for the upcoming international break, there’s not much to do except speculate on how to fix Tottenham Hotspur. So let’s do that! A lot has already been written regarding Mauricio Pochettino’s desired squad rebuild, but a recent article in the Times (£) gives a little more detail, though not anything firm on which to hang your hat on.
According to Gary Jacob, Pochettino wants at least six new players in, including at least three defenders.
“[Pochettino] wants at least three defenders, a holding midfielder and two attacking players, including a striker — and that is without the threat of Harry Kane and others leaving. The transfer budget and the type of player who may be willing to join is likely to be different if there is no Champions League football next season. At least Tottenham have been cautious financially and repaying the bank debt on the new £1 billion stadium does not rely on qualifying for the competition.”
– Gary Jacob, Times of London
This is interesting, and lines up with what we know about the current situation at Spurs. It looks very likely that Jan Vertonghen, Toby Alderweireld, and Serge Aurier will not last past this season in North London, and defense is an area that is already problematic. Despite the purchases of Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso, Spurs are still without a reliable defensive midfielder, and while they have Troy Parrott coming through the academy, they could still use a Fernando Llorente-type backup striker, especially if Harry Kane continues to falter offensively.
Naturally, there’s no direct quotes or any kind of corroboration of this, so this should be considered at best a rumor. It also doesn’t state exactly when Pochettino would like these hypothetical players to come in — one would imagine that the club would test the waters in January, but Spurs have always been a club reluctant to buy in the January transfer window. It would also require the departure of the contract rebels who are tipped to leave the club this summer, but also players like Victor Wanyama, Aurier, and Danny Rose.
Financially, I don’t think this is going to be an issue. Spurs’ refinancing of their stadium bonds and the above-expected income from the new stadium puts Spurs on a very good financial footing going forward. They still won’t be able to compete with the likes of Manchester City and Manchester United, but there should be funds available for purchases, plus whatever money is raised from player sales.
All of this is also contingent on Pochettino actually making it to the summer, or even to January. While it appears Spurs are going to give him the opportunity and the backing to refresh the squad, who knows what happens if they continue their slide in the Premier League.
So take this all with a huge grain of salt for now.