Change is on the horizon in North London. It’s no secret that a number of players will likely be shown the door this summer as Spurs look to overhaul key areas of their squad.
Midfield, in particular, seems to be the target zone for Mauricio Pochettino and his coaching staff. The club has been heavily linked with the transfers of various midfielders including Giovani Lo Celso, Tanguy Ndombele, Donny van de Beek, Bruno Fernandes, and Nicolo Zaniolo (Standard).
New additions to the squad almost always come at the expense of existing players. This shouldn’t be any different at Tottenham.
One player that has somewhat fallen under the radar in terms of transfer talk this summer is Victor Wanyama. A fringe player at best nowadays, the 27-year-old Kenyan midfielder hasn’t exactly had a fruitful stint in North London since his transfer from Southampton in 2016.
The quality of the Kenyan midfielder shouldn’t be denied, but ultimately his career at Spurs has been plagued by injuries.
Life at White Hart Lane started well for Wanyama. 47 appearances across all competitions landed him five goals and the single assist, equating to a total of 3,894 minutes for the season.
Himself and Moussa Dembele formed a formidable partnership in central midfield that year. Wanyama appeared 36 times in the Premier League, participating in nearly every match.
Little was it to be known at the time, but that would be his last successful season at the club.
Problems first began in August 2017, suffering cartilage damage to his knee. The injury left Wanyama out of action until January 2018, missing 26 games.
Wanyama would return for the remainder of the season featuring 18 times and scoring just one goal.
Unfortunately, things didn’t get much easier heading into the 2018/19 season. During pre-season, Wanyama suffered further knee problems. This left him unavailable for three matches at the start of the season.
This was followed by a further knee injury in November 2018 that saw him absent from football until late January.
In terms of statistics, the 2018/19 season was Wanyama’s most difficult. He only managed 22 games, 2 less than the previous season, with just one goal coming against Huddersfield late in the season.
Spurs were hampered by injuries throughout the season. The departure of Moussa Dembele left them with limited options. But the Club’s inability to find a replacement in the January transfer window didn’t aid the cause.
Squad depth is a facet that must be addressed this summer. With the potential arrivals of Ndombele and Lo Celso, this pushes Wanyama further out of the frame.
However, Wanyama recently hailed Mauricio Pochettino as “a great coach who works very hard” and hopes that his involvement in the African Championship will provide him with a “good opportunity to prepare my fitness level fully before the holiday and then prepare for the new season”, suggesting that he is keen to stick around at the club (Goal).
His value is approximately £20m (Transfermarkt) – a figure which has consistently fell following injuries and lack of game time in recent years.
For the sake of his future and the club moving forward, it might be best that Wanyama pursues new ventures elsewhere, whilst Spurs progress with new signings in order to bolster and upgrade their midfield.
These new potential signings may restrict Wanyama of game time, regardless of whether he is injured or not.
Victor Wanyama showed promise in his first season at Spurs, but it hasn’t quite worked out since. It’s an unfortunate circumstance where injuries have cost him much-needed game time to improve himself as a player. If Spurs are to bring in players such as Ndombele and Lo Celso, then they should cash in on Wanyama before his values drops further.
As of late, his form has been questionable. He constantly looks nervy on the ball and lacks that creative edge that Spurs need in their squad. This was evident during his involvement in the Champions League and spoke volumes in terms of his capability to perform in the highest competition.
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