After disappointing results on the pitch have all but ended Tottenham’s 2017/18 campaign, management have turned one eye to the future with contract renewals for key men on the table, including winger Erik Lamela.
ESPN say that the club are preparing to activate an option in his current contract, which is set to expire in the summer of 2019, which will extend the deal until 2020.
Lamela earns around £65,000 but has not held negotiations over committing his future to the club since he initially joined from Roma in 2013.
The winger has become a key man since returning to fitness for Mauricio Pochettino, but critics will still question what role he has to play in the Spurs squad.
The main cause for concern for many will be that he spent 13 months on the sideline with a mysterious hip concern which was not expected to be long-term. Such fragility is not something that the club can afford with their tight wage structure meaning that a new deal for Lamela may prevent further signings or pay rises for other key men.
Since returning, Lamela’s statistics have not been particularly impressive, with two FA Cup goals and six assists in 29 games in all competitions not matching the likes of Heung-Min Son. Whilst Son has enjoyed his finest form to date this season, Lamela remains inconsistent.
Despite that, his coach has preferred him to the South Korean in many of the club’s recent big games, such as against Manchester City. That kind of faith in the Argentinian would suggest that Pochettino wants Lamela around and believes him to be worth the money, but he clearly has a point to prove if he is to convince all of the Lilywhites’ fans of his importance too.