Tottenham’s newest signing is the first of the new group to have a kit number assigned. Richarlison’s new number at Spurs will be the same number he wears for Brazil, his international team. The club announced via a social media promotional video that the Brazilian international will wear the vacant No. 9 kit for Spurs.
So I won’t go so far as to say that Tottenham’s No. 9 kit has been cursed, but it hasn’t had the best history over the past 15 years or so. The last player to wear it was Gareth Bale two seasons ago when he returned to Spurs on loan from Real Madrid. That’s fine, but he basically borrowed it. Prior to that, however, the No. 9 kit was worn by Vincent Janssen (2016-19) and Roberto Soldado (2013-15), two of the bigger striker flops Spurs have purchased in recent memory.
Go back a little further and you get to Roman Pavlyuchenko (2008-12), Dimitar Berbatov (2006-08), Grzegorz Rasiak (2005-06), and Frederic Kanouté (2003-05), and that’s basically the Premier League era. You can make a strong argument that, a one-season rental to Bale aside, the only player that’s REALLY performed well in that No. 9 kit was Berbatov. (This is probably Pav erasure, feel free to yell at me in the comments).
That has every chance of changing now. Richarlison wore the No. 7 shirt at Everton, but he has a chance now to make the No. 9 kit relevant again, and it’s been far FAR too long since that’s happened. Or, if you’re THAT sort of Spurs fan, Richarlison is going to completely fall apart in that kit, providing further proof that Spurs should just retire the No. 9 kit, burn it somewhere in the Hackney Marshes, and then never speak of it again. Either or.