When Kyle Walker left Tottenham for Manchester City last summer, there was brief concern that it may lead to others departing Mauricio Pochettino’s project at the club.
There were rumours of discontent over the club’s perceived lack of ambition in the transfer market. Eric Dier reportedly wanted to join Manchester United before they eventually signed Nemanja Matic from Chelsea.
Danny Rose meanwhile went on record to state his displeasure with the club’s transfer policy, by telling the media: “As a Tottenham player, I’d love to see more signings. I am not saying buy 10 players, I’d love to see two or three - and not players you have to Google and say, ‘Who’s that?’ I mean well-known players.”
No more first-team players have departed Spurs in the time since, while Serge Aurier, Davinson Sanchez, Fernando Llorente and Lucas Moura have all arrived as the club significantly upped its outlay on new signings.
However, despite an FA Cup still to play for and rousing performances in the Champions League, there are underlying concerns on the North London club’s long-term plan.
Chasing the money
Boss Pochettino is constantly being linked with an eventual ‘big money’ move away, most notably to Real Madrid.
Without any title and with a relatively modest budget compared to other leading clubs, players may be tempted by moves away. Rose and central defender Toby Alderweireld may be two to leave Spurs this summer.
The Belgian central defender’s contract expires in June 2019 and reports suggest no agreement has been struck regarding its extension.
The player has been left out of a series of matchday squads – his last Premier League start came in November - despite being declared fit and the only conclusion to draw from his situation is that he will depart in the summer.
Despite Alderwiereld and Rose’s absence from the first-team in recent months, Tottenham have continued their run of strong form with a number of players hitting form.
However, the two could well be set for summer exits. After all, as shown with Walker’s exit, Spurs are willing to cash-in on first-team players and there is sufficient evidence to show Tottenham the depth to cover their absences.
Neither Rose (27) nor Alderweireld (29) have a significant amount of time remaining at the top level and there next big contract may likely to be the last when they command significant interest.
It is no slight on them that they wish to secure a final big contract and one last shot at being part of a title-winning team. Despite all of Spurs’ qualities, it appears unlikely they will find either at the club.
Whilst Pochettino is arguably the league’s finest manager at improving players and ensuring his side plays at a higher level than the sum of their collective parts, the club’s recent record in the transfer market has been hit and miss.
Each departure from the first-team squad will need to be replaced due to the relative lack of depth and Spurs’ success has been built on a solid defence in recent seasons.
Again, it will also raise doubts as to how many of the current Spurs squad may wish to leave the club in the future. Will they adopt a similar tack as Alderweireld in contract negotiations to accelerate a move away?
Kyle Walker’s Premier League medal this season may plant further doubts in minds and, with each exit, maintaining their upward trajectory becomes that extra bit tougher.
How much of an affect do you think the inevitable exits at Spurs this summer will have? Let us know by commenting below.