Harry Redknapp is renowned for making shrewd transfers during the January window but do Tottenham need any new purchases with such a large first team squad asks Ger McCarthy.
Tottenham Hotspur Chairman, Daniel Levy, has moved to reassure Spurs fans that Gareth Bale will not be sold amid recent transfer speculation and that should appease Tottenham fans expecting few in any new signings in the January transfer window.
Gareth Bale has enjoyed a terrific season under the tutelage of manager Harry Redknapp following an indifferent start to his White Hart Lane career. Bale’s renaissance on the left wing for the North Londoners has proven the catalyst for qualification for the knockout phase of the Champions League and a surge up the Premier League table.
In 17 Premier League appearances Bale has found the net 5 times while 6 appearances in the Champions League have yielded 4 goals. It is the winger’s ability to get beyond the opposing full back which has helped stretch opponents’ defences and open up scoring opportunities for the likes of Rafael Van der Vaart, Roman Pavlyuchenko and Peter Crouch.
Bale’s virtuoso performances in the San Siro when the winger scored a sublime hat-trick in a narrow 4-3 Champions League defeat to Inter Milan alerted all the top European clubs to the Welsh international’s searing pace and undoubted skill. Spurs fans have been bracing themselves for probable transfer bids in the region of 50 – 60 million Euros from suitors such as Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan but the club’s chairman Daniel Levy has reiterated that those clubs will be wasting their time.
Levy announced at Tottenham’s AGM recently “Both Berbatov and Carrick had two years left on their contract. Both players wanted to go and that was the reason they were sold. But in the case of Gareth he’s got a long contract and I can assure you he will not be sold.”
That will be music to the Tottenham Hotspur supporters everywhere but in the same report Levy also alluded to the fact he doesn’t anticipate any new players coming in. Spurs possess the largest squad in the Premier League and are more likely to trim their first team numbers (with Robbie Keane expected to depart) rather than add to a bulging roster.
Long term injuries in defence meant the pre-season purchase of former Gunner William Gallas and with Sebastian Bassong and Younis Kaboul available, the return of Michael Dawson and Ledley King from injury leaves Spurs well covered across the back four.
The midfield area is also well stacked with Palacios, Jenas, Huddlestone, Modric, Bale and Lennon vying for the usual four starting berths. Nico Kranjcar and David Bentley look likely to leave following limited first team opportunities so perhaps the purchase of an experienced winger or central midfielder might be on the cards.
When (as looks most likely) Robbie Keane departs Tottenham have the luxury of Rafael Van der Vaart to return from injury and compliment an already strong attacking force in Crouch, Defoe and the in-form Pavlyuchenko. Again the potential to replace Keane with an out and out striker is a possibility for Harry Redknapp as Van der Vaart tends to play off a front man either in an orthodox 4-4-2 or just behind a pair of strikers in a more attacking 4-3-3.
Newspaper reports suggest Newcastle’s Andy Carroll as a potential target for Spurs in the not too distant future with Everton’s Steven Pieenar also long coveted by the White Hart Lane club. The South African’s contract is almost up and with Everton signalling they may not be able to hold on to the mercurial midfielder; Tottenham could be a potential fit.
For all the speculation that is certain to surround Harry Redknapp and Spurs’ during the upcoming transfer window the fact Gareth Bale looks set for an extended stay at White Hart Lane will be the most important piece of business as far as Spurs fans are concerned.