Last summer Tottenham spent big, the bountiful transfer fee extracted from Real Madrid for Gareth Bale gave Levy both the ability and need to bolster the squad. Bale was the best player in the Premier League last season, his goals and solo performances saved Spurs on many occasions. The question posed was how to replace Bale, the course taken was thankfully to invest the money straight back into the team – but the way in which we did so is questionable.
The transfer policy on who to buy with the Bale money was decided by Levy, AVB and new technical director Franco Baldini. The end result was the induction of Paulinho, Eriksen, Chadli, Soldado Chiriches, Lamela and Capoue into Lilywhite colours this summer. Many of these signings have come under intense scrutiny and criticism, as none of them have yet to materialize into the quality players that we hoped they would. It will take time for any new player to settle in and adapt to a new league, a new team, and a new style of play. But a problem arises when six or seven of the first XI on the pitch are “in transition”, so consequently the performances and results will be below par.
The players need time to gel and to learn how to play well together, even longer when you consider the amount of new players to be integrated. Obviously you have to bring players into the team if you’re selling your best players each season, but adding seven new players into a team is always going to be a gamble.
So as exciting as a wave of signings can be for a club’s supporters, and as beneficial as new players can be for the depth of a team in the long run, the reality is in the short term the results will not be immediate. The seven signings coming into the squad, combined with the loss of Gareth Bale is enough to destabilize any squad.
Levy and Baldini may have been better in seeking the signatures of two or three really top class players worth say 40 million each. Who would you rather have bought – Chadli and Lamela, or Mesut Ozil? It may be the case the Spurs management bought four players too many and too average. For example, the likes of Chadli, Lamela, Paulinho and Capoue are more in the ilk of squad fodder than of game changer.
The problem with spending over a hundred million on players is that it raises expectations, and when you spend it poorly it draws serious criticism, with the target this season at least a spot in the top four. Now halfway through the season it remains to be seen whether or not the team can learn to play well together and get results, the rest of this season will tell us if Levy’s transfer gamble has paid off.
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