The big news in recent days has been coming off the field at White Hart Lane, as the club put pen to paper on a deal that sees them play their Champions League home ties at Wembley next season, with the option of using the national stadium as their temporary home in the 2017/18 season too. However, with Daniel Levy promising not to sell players in order to fund the stadium, the list of players rumoured to be heading to Spurs grows ever larger. As ever, Tottenham look set to be one of the Premier League’s more active clubs this summer transfer window, and will look to consolidate on their third place finish by adding the quality and depth to mount a title challenge and to become a contender in the Champions League under Mauricio Pochettino.
The biggest of those names is Karim Bellarabi, the German winger from Bayer Leverkusen. BILD report that Spurs are interested with the club amongst four others battling for the German’s signature. It would be quite a transfer for Spurs to pull off, especially as Bellarabi seems content with his place in the current Leverkusen side. Despite this, supposing he was to follow in the footsteps of former Leverkusen winger Heung Min-Son and join Spurs, he would certainly fit in quickly with Pochettino’s philosophy. He is a hard-working winger, who offers more defensively than someone like Christian Eriksen, and also offers some threat going forward shown by his 8 goals in 37 appearances this season.
Much was also made of Pochettino’s presence at the Netherlands friendly game against Ireland on Saturday night. Numerous players have have been linked as a result of this, but Pochettino was spotted talking to representatives of Shane Long, while Sky Sports understand that Pochettino was looking at Vincent Janssen and Riechedly Bazoer. The former looks to be direct cover for Harry Kane, while the rumours surrounding Bazoer are more complicated – with the youngster so highly rated amongst European clubs, it is difficult to see him signing just to play infrequently. Simultaneously, it is nigh on impossible to see him immediately usurping Eric Dier, Mousa Dembele, Dele Alli or Christian Eriksen in the pecking order – so unless one of the current crop is sold, Bazoer looks unlikely.
Shane Long, on the other hand, looks – on the surface – to be a sensible signing. The Irishman has worked with Pochettino before, has Premier League experience and is a part of a Southampton squad that really looks to be going places under Ronald Koeman. He’d also provide ample backup for Harry Kane as an out-and-out striker, whilst his versatility and pace would also mean he could play as any of the three midfielders behind the striker in Pochettino’s 4-2-3-1. However, Long perhaps isn’t the kind of player Spurs need to look at if they are to become a title winning side in the future. He wouldn’t add to the quality of the strongest XI, and at 29 would be one of the oldest players in the squad. Finally, he also lacks notable European experience which Spurs might desperately need given their place in the Champions League next season.
Featured Image: All rights reserved by Kody Platter
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