Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino feels he must add quality to his squad this summer to keep the club’s upwards momentum in their search for a major trophy. The Argentine believes there must be new challenges for his current stars, such as Harry Kane and Dele Alli, to avoid any plateau in their development.
“Right, now [I hear] we need to win some trophies, no?” he said. “That is good, the pressure. I think it’s important to understand now that we need to be clever how we manage the expectation and how we need to put pressure on our own players.
“We understand that Dele Alli, Harry Kane, Christian Eriksen, Dier, Alderweireld are really good players. They want to win, but need to feel the pressure a little bit to improve every season.
“If there’s no competition in behind it’s normal to drop your motivation, it’s normal to drop everything that you do. And then it’s difficult to win.”
The Daniel Levy approach
Tottenham are yet to sign anyone in this transfer window whilst their Premier League rivals have spent big to strengthen their squads. The club that has spent the most so far are Manchester City, who paid £50m to bring Kyle Walker to the club from Spurs.
“How have Manchester City, Liverpool, Chelsea and different clubs tried to improve their season?” he said. “Bringing players and trying to put more pressure on their star players, their key players – and for us we need to do that too.”
It has been made clear by Tottenham chairman, Daniel Levy, that the club does not have the budget nor the intentions to match the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea and Manchester United.
Levy’s approach is tailored to the long-term growth of the club, investing in facilities, finding untapped talent and promoting players from Spurs’ youth academy.
“We are not a club today that can compete with Manchester United and City for a player. We cannot fight. We are in a different way. But the thing is Daniel is very keen to sign like me. These type of player we are talking about they are not easy to find.” Pochettino said.
Trust in youth
Over the pre-season period, we have seen some of these academy players in action. The likes of Cameron Carter-Vickers, Josh Onomah and Kyle Walker-Peters all made appearances during Spurs’ tour of America.
However, despite showing great potential, they are still in a crucial stage of development and it will take a brave Pochettino to risk playing these young players ahead of their established first-team regulars.
Time to act
As for prospects for Spurs to sign this season, they are strongly linked with a very unsettled Ross Barkley. Ronald Koeman has made it clear that Barkley will leave the club and that he is not part of the plans for his Everton side.
However, for the deal to go through either Barkley will have to reduce his wage expectations (having recently rejected a £100,000 a week contract at Goodison) or Levy will have to break his spending mould and pay £35m for the player and make him the highest earner at the club.
It is a pivotal time for Tottenham who must act soon if they are to add strength and depth to their squad before the end of the transfer window. Spurs will kick off their Premier League campaign against Newcastle at St James’ Park on Sunday 13th August.
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