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Tottenham Hotspur must add experience to side to win silverware

Tottenham Hotspur lacked the experience of Juventus in their Champions League clash.

Mathew Nash

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Tottenham Hotspur were eliminated from the Champions League last night. Two quick fire goals from Gonzalo Higuain and Paulo Dybala gave Juventus a 2-1 win at Wembley and a 4-3 aggregate win in the tie.

It was a harsh result for Spurs. Over the two legs, Tottenham were the better team. But in the end two spells of poor defending cost Tottenham, with the first-leg goals also coming in quick succession.

One other key aspect that seemed to cost Tottenham was experience. After the game Mauricio Pochettino suggested that this was not the case. But just looking at the performances of some Juve players last night suggests otherwise.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 07: Harry Kane of Tottenham applauds the supporters following his teams 1-2 defeat during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Juventus at Wembley Stadium on March 7, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli were magnificent at the back. The introduction of veteran full-back Stephan Lichtsteiner gave Juve a big boost. Higuain, wiley as ever.

All four players over 30-years-old and it might be wise for Tottenham to start considering some older heads.

Signing players over 30 is not something Tottenham do. Financially it seems a waste to bring in a player for the short-term.

But in defence and midfield in particular Tottenham could use a player, in their mid-30s, who has played Champions League football before.

Daniel Levy and Mauricio Pochettino did break the mould with the signing of Fernando Llorente in the summer. But it is players of a certain age with those leadership traits that Juve had in abundance that Tottenham must look for.

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 07: Stephan Lichtsteiner of Juventus celebrates at the end of the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg match between Tottenham Hotspur and Juventus at Wembley Stadium on March 7, 2018 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

The youthful effort of this Tottenham side is commendable but when they went 2-1 down there did seem to be a lack of leaders. Harry Kane tried to rally the troops, as Heung-min Son. But Tottenham had no Chiellini, no general to march them forward.

Plenty of top veterans will be available in the summer as contracts wind down. If Tottenham want to win silverware it might be time to bring in such players to command the troops.

In time many of these Spurs players will be great leaders, but right now they seem to be lacking.

On a day like last night it appeared to be the very narrow difference between getting the better of Juventus and heading out of the Champions League.

Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur round-up: Striker offload, Martial U-turn and Vertonghen wanted

All the latest news and gossip from Tottenham Hotspur.

Mathew Nash

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Striker offload

Tottenham Hotspur are stepping up their attempts to remove Vincent Janssen and Fernando Llorente from the club.

The London Evening Standard is reporting that Tottenham are hoping to raise as much as £30 million in fees by selling the two striker flops.

Spurs signed Dutch international Vincent Janssen in the summer of 2016 but he failed to have an impact and spent last season on loan at Fenerbahce. Llorente arrived as his replacement from Swansea but also struggled.

(<> at Levi’s Stadium on July 22, 2018 in Santa Clara, California.

Martial u-turn

Tottenham target Anthony Martial will now be allowed to leave Manchester United, according to reports.

The Guardian claim that United manager Jose Mourinho has performed a U-turn and wants the unhappy Frenchman sold this summer.

Tottenham have previously been keen but United want £80 million and would rather sell to foreign parties Bayern Munich or PSG.

Vertonghen wanted

PSG are keen on Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen. As reported by Les Parisien the French champions are looking to bring in a new central defender this summer who can also play in other roles.

The Belgian is the perfect option but Tottenham would seem very unlikely to sell. Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger is also on their list.

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Everton

Everton round-up: Richarlison medical, Digne price-tag, Klaassen bid

All the latest news and gossip from Everton.

Mathew Nash

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Richarlison medical

Richarlison has completed his medical at Everton and is set to join on a £50 million deal from Watford in the next 24 hours.

Marco Silva worked with the Brazilian last season and was keen to reunite with him this summer.

An initial fee of £35 million is set to be paid for the player but clauses will take the overall price-tag nearer to £50 million.

That will make it a club record, ahead of last summer’s £45 million signing of Gylfi Sigurdsson.

(Photo credit should read PAU BARRENA/AFP/Getty Images)

Digne price

There have been conflicting reports today in Spain regarding recent reports in England over Lucas Digne. The Mirror recently claimed Everton had agreed a £22 million fee for the French international.

However, that does not appear to be the case.

According to Sport, Everton have offered Barcelona just €10 million (£8.9m) for the player, with Barcelona wanting €16 million (£14.3m).

Everton currently have a delegation in Spain trying to thrash out a deal for the left-back.

Klaassen wanted

German side Werder Bremen want Everton midfielder Davy Klaassen. Kreiszeitung are reporting that the Bundesliga side are hopeful of signing the former Ajax captain in a £11.6 million deal this summer.

That would be a huge £12 million reduction on the £23.6 million Everton paid Ajax for the player last summer.

Klaassen failed to find his form at Everton and is expected to depart this summer.

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Manchester United

Jose Mourinho interest should spring Tottenham into Harry Maguire action, using Toby Alderweireld

Tottenham would be better off losing the Belgian now and bringing in England’s World Cup star.

Mathew Nash

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Manchester United are the latest team being linked with a move for Leicester City defender Harry Maguire. According to The Telegraph, Jose Mourinho is a big fan of the England World Cup hero and is readying a move.

Any deal would cost in excess of £50 million. The Mirror suggest he will cost £65 million and see the futures of Marcos Rojo. Chris Smalling, Victor Lindelof and Phil Jones jeopardised.

Tottenham Hotspur have also been linked with Maguire this summer and this development should jolt them into action.

Spurs could have the upper hand in this race, as they have a player Mourinho may want even more than Maguire.

(Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

United are known to be very keen on Belgian defender Toby Alderweireld. The 29-year-old’s contract stand-off with Spurs has seen him linked with an exit this summer. Tottenham are standing firm on any asking price. The latest reports suggested that fee was £75 million.

But, in the long run, allowing Alderweireld to go for cheaper could be a stroke of genius from Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy.

Alderweireld is a far more ‘Mourinho’ player and the Manchester United boss would surely prefer him to Maguire. If Levy and Spurs allow the Belgian to go at a cheaper price it would leave the path clear to lodge their own bid for Maguire.

Tottenham would be ridding themselves of a contract rebel who, despite his brilliance, is nearly five years older than the England hero. In return, they would get Maguire, who would suit their style of play perfectly – especially if Mauricio Pochettino decides on playing a back-three.

A little convoluted? Perhaps. However, this could end up being the best case scenario for Tottenham.

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