Tottenham told they've done something just as shocking as Man City selling Cancelo
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Tottenham told they've done something just as shocking as Man City selling Cancelo

Sky Sports presenter Jeff Stelling believes Tottenham Hotspur releasing Matt Doherty was just as shocking as Manchester City loaning Joao Cancelo out.

The January transfer window had quite a few surprises in store for us, but nobody really saw the Premier League Champions letting one of their best players in recent years go out on loan to one of their Champions League rivals.

That’s exactly what they did with Cancelo, and Stelling thinks Spurs did something similar as well.

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Tottenham releasing Matt Doherty is just as shocking as Man City selling Cancelo – Jeff Stelling

It seemed pretty certain that Tottenham would let one of Emerson Royal or Matt Doherty leave the club if they signed Pedro Porro from Sporting Lisbon.

Fabio Paratici secured a deal to bring the Spaniard in on deadline day, and Doherty was expected to make way by joining Atletico Madrid on loan.

That wasn’t surprising at all until news emerged that the defender wasn’t going out on loan – he was joining Diego Simeone’s side on a permanent deal after Spurs terminated his contract and released him.

Stelling believes that was as big a surprise as Manchester City’s decision to loan Cancelo out.

He said on Sky Sports, as quoted by HITC: “I said that was the most surpassing move (Joao Cancelo leaving Man City for Bayern Munich) of the transfer window.

“Actually, Matt Doherty to Atletico Madrid might have been. Pretty much on a par.”

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Why did Spurs terminate his contract?

Tottenham didn’t necessarily want to terminate Doherty’s contract. In fact, The Athletic reported how the Irishman was told by Spurs that they had no plans of letting him leave the club just a few days before he was gone.

However, following Porro’s arrival, it became very clear that there was no place for Doherty. As a result, a loan move was agreed, but Tottenham then faced another roadblock.

According to FIFA rules, a club can only loan out eight senior players. Tottenham had already done that with Sergio Reguilon, Harry Winks, Bryan Gil, Giovani Lo Celso, Tanguy Ndombele, Joe Rodon, Djed Spence and Destiny Udogie all playing their football elsewhere. (90min)

A move to send Doherty out on loan wasn’t legally possible, and that forced Tottenham to rip his deal up and let him walk away for nothing.

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