Tottenham: Eriksen contract latest; Portugal star targeted; Lazio target midfielder
Tottenham Hotspur got their 2016/17 Premier League campaign under way yesterday, notching a solid if unspectacular 1-1 draw away to Everton that gives them a platform to launch another title challenge and improve on their third place finish from last campaign.
If Spurs are to go for the Premier League title, though, it is essential that they hang onto star playmaker Christian Eriksen, who started on the left hand side of midfield at Goodison Park. Talks over a new contract for the Dane have caused slight problems for the North London side, with Eriksen hoping to increase his £30,000 per week wages five-fold to a massive £150,000-per-week.
However, Eriksen’s agent has claimed that the Dane is not motivated purely by money, and that his client is perfectly happy at Tottenham Hotspur, cooling speculation over a summer move.
Losing Eriksen would be a massive blow for Spurs, who have a Champions League campaign to look forward to alongside a challenge for the Premier League title. Although he could add a touch more consistency to his game, he has genuine quality to be a star on the European stage, and his ability from dead balls makes him a critical part of any success that Spurs will have this season. The news that he is happy at the club will be music to the ears of the fans and the club as a whole.
Elswhere, Pochettino is reportedly interested in bolstering his central midfield ranks, despite giving a debut to new signing Victor Wanyama against Everton, by making a £13 million move for Sporting Lisbon captain Adrien Silva.
Silva, who was an important part of the Portugal side who triumphed in this summer’s European Championships, is a tidy central midfielder with a penchant for making a tackle, and could provide a good alternative for the likes of Dier and Wanyama in Spurs’ defensive midfield pairing.
Silva could be an especially useful signing if Spurs were to have an injury crisis. He currently represents a better alternative in midfield than the likes of Ryan Mason, and Tottenham’s defensive shortages could mean that Dier is used as a centre back rather than a midfielder at some points this season. Signing the Portuguese, especially for such a reasonable price, would be an excellent deal for the club.
The arrival of Silva could spell the end for other midfielders at the club, and one name who is likely to depart regardless is Nabil Bentaleb, who is not part of Mauricio Pochettino’s plans for the upcoming season.
21-year-old Bentaleb, who broke into the squad under Tim Sherwood, has a contract at White Hart Lane until 2020, but has reportedly been the subject of a loan enquiry by Italian side Lazio.
Whilst a loan move may not be ideal for Spurs, who wish to sell the Algerian youngster, it would mean the player would get to spend some time away from the club, furthering his development, and possibly opening the door to a return should he impress in Italy. It would be a good move for Bentaleb to leave, and if a loan to Rome is the best way for that to happen, that is what Spurs should allow.
Featured Image: All rights reserved by Sam Meers