Jose Mourinho had insisted that there are double-standards with the way Tottenham’s pursuit for a striker is discussed by parts of the media, insisting that it feels as if only the North Londoners “don’t have the right” to build a balanced squad.
Several pundits have claimed over recent years that no top striker would want to go to Spurs and serve as Harry Kane’s understudy (Sky Sports).
Former Tottenham striker Dimitar Berbatov became the latest ex-player to back that assertion earlier this week as he claimed that he would not sign for Spurs if he was still playing as he would know his game time will be limited.
Mourinho insisted ahead of Tottenham’s Premier League season opener against Everton that he does not want to bring in a striker who is afraid of competition.
He told Football.London: “The point is not me convincing the striker, it’s the striker convincing me and if the striker is afraid to come to Tottenham and the striker is afraid of competition then I don’t want the striker.
“So it’s not for me to convince him, it’s for him to convince me. If he says I don’t want to go because I don’t want to be in a squad where we have Harry Kane and Sonny, Lamela, Lucas, I don’t want to go to that squad then good-bye.”
The Spurs boss claimed that the Lilywhites’ pursuit of a second striker has been unfairly singled out while their rivals are not questioned when they do the same.
When asked if Tottenham will go for a younger option or a or a ‘top profile’ forward, he responded: “Which top profile? The £120m profile?.
“I cannot speak about ages because that is not the point. It’s about opportunity. We are a balanced club, we are a club with certain principles, we are a club that one year ago or so ended building the best stadium in the world.
“We are a different club. The point here now is to get a more balanced squad, a squad with more options and I was already saying before I don’t like the back-up situation.
“I just told you that I also don’t like the profile of player that doesn’t want to come to us. You look to all the other top clubs and they have many options as centre-forwards and that question doesn’t appear.
“Every club is a club and I don’t want their managers to misinterpret my words but for example, Werner went to Chelsea and Chelsea had Abraham and Giroud. Manchester City has Aguero and Jesus. Liverpool has Firmino, Origi, Salah can play there too, Mane.
“It looks like it’s only with us where we don’t have the right to have a more balanced squad with more options. If you change the direction from the striker position to midfield – we have Winks, Sissoko, Ndombele and Hojbjerg didnt ask me ‘Am I back-up or I am I going there to play?’
“It’s up to you, mate. Players decide who plays, it’s not me. It’s players who decide who plays. So a striker to come here, I know that we have the best striker in this country, there is no doubts about it, but the striker that comes here has to come with his own ambitions.
“If he doesn’t have ambitions, he doesn’t belong to us.”
Spurs Web Opinion
While one can certainly understand where Jose is coming from, we are almost in a unique situation with Kane as unlike the likes of Aubameyang, Salah, Mane and Martial, he is an old-school number 9. This means that our potential targets are much more sceptical of being used alongside the England captain. However, given our ambitions, the sheer number of games we could potentially have next season and Kane’s injury record, Mourinho should not really have too hard a time convincing our targets that they would get plenty of game time next season.
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