What’s next for Tottenham? That is the question firmly on the minds of those in North London, and pundits up and down the country after defeat to Liverpool in the Champions League final at the weekend.
It’s fair to say Spurs are now at crossroads, routes which will determine not only the immediate future of the club, but also the long term aims.
Dogged by almost a season of stadium delays and no signings in over a year, the Lilywhites still achieved a top 4 finish and Champions League football for a fourth consecutive season, League Cup semi-finalists and a first Champions League final, further evidence of the progress the club has made under Mauricio Pochettino.
But, this summer Pochettino needs to be backed by the Spurs board in order to push the club onto the next level and become consistent challengers in all competitions. Finishing more than 20 points behind the top two in the Premier League shows the club has much work to do to close the gap.
Many will point to the fantastic new stadium as a drain on transfer funds for the next few years, but the chance to push on and become a really big club may not come round again. The lack of strength in depth showed up often when the side were struggling to make a breakthrough in games and looking at the bench gave none or very little option for someone to come on and change the game.
As is usual for any transfer window, the rumours fly around of ins and outs happening at New White Hart Lane. Spurs have to be in the market for a top drawer striker to ease the pressure on Harry Kane, a replacement for Moussa Dembele and a player who can push Christian Eriksen to start to dictate games.
Of course there are names in the frame, Jack Grealish still appears to be in the frame despite Aston Villa’s promotion back to the Premier League, Ryan Sessegnon looks set to leave Fulham with Spurs a favoured destination with Champions League football and Poch’s ability and talent to progress younger players.
Tanguy Ndombele is another high on Spurs’ radar as it Youri Tielemans, and while it might cost Daniel Levy a bit this summer he can’t keep expecting Pochettino to keep producing miracles as he managed this season.
There may will be the odd casualty with Toby Alderweireld, Kieron Trippier and Danny Rose interesting clubs at home and abroad, should they depart replacements must be sought for them to avoid weakening a squad they might only just have made stronger in other positions, Spurs won’t be any better off if they allow players to leave this close season without upgrading the cover in those positions.
Other clubs in the top five will also strengthen, it’s up to Spurs to keep pace or start to fall by the wayside again, for a club that’s very much on the up despite no trophies won, that would be criminal to see.
Written by Trevor Knell
Follow Trevor on Twitter @trevk37
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