Regardless of whether Tottenham make it into the top four this season, it is a huge summer transfer window for the club.
If they have Champions League to play next season, then the squad needs vast improvement.
If they fail to qualify, then they need to take their game to the next level in order to make the top four next year, push for a trophy, and convince the likes of Harry Kane and Antonio Conte to stick around.
Either way, a big summer lies ahead.
Conte is and always had been a ‘here and now’ manager. He wants to win today, rather than tomorrow. That means an emphasis on buying players who instantly improve the squad, rather than Tottenham’s usual tactics of buying young for the future.
The Italian will not accept that as a sole transfer strategy. As for Kane, he has been extremely patient with Tottenham, but he also wants to see his side competing for silverware ‘here and now’.
So, who could Tottenham go for in the summer and which positions need to be strengthened?
I think most Tottenham fans will agree that this is the position most in need of an upgrade if Conte stays and continues with his back three formation.
Emerson Royal started the season really well in a back four, but he is not well suited to the attributes of a wing-back.
Matt Doherty looks to be a man rejuvenated in the wing-back role, throwing it back to his Wolves days, but Spurs need more.
Djed Spence and Tariq Lamptey have both been readily linked with the Lilywhites and I think they would both represent smart acquisitions.
You have the guarantee that they will improve Spurs instantly, while also being young and having a high ceiling. The best of both worlds.
Ideally, I would love to see Spurs splashing the cash to get both this summer, seeing as Spence won’t be an extremely expensive signing. Having Lamptey as first-choice and Spence as a rotation option would be incredible.
In a back three formation, the centre-back roles do very much differ from one another. The job Eric Dier is doing as a central sweeper is very different to the role Cristian Romero is doing on the right.
If Tottenham have enough money to go out and buy a big-name central defender option, then I think it needs to be on that left side.
Ben Davies can drop down to a backup option and I would love to see a name like Milan Skriniar, Stefan de Vrij, Sven Botman, or Josko Gvardiol come in.
Spurs also need to improve their defensive depth in general with incomings and outgoings.
Creative midfield –
Tottenham look to have found a really nice balance with Rodrigo Bentancur and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, which will only grow stronger once Oliver Skipp returns, with Conte also having Harry Winks as a rotation option.
However, the one thing that Tottenham’s midfield lacks is an out-and-out creator. This is especially apparent in games when Conte wants to play three in midfield and two up front.
Personally, I would love to see Christian Eriksen come back to the club as a free signing because Spurs really miss someone of that style – but only if he can get back to his best with Brentford.
I would also look toward Southampton’s James Ward-Prowse if possible, although he may be too expensive. Not only is he homegrown, but he also offers those wicked set-pieces and an eye for a pass.
Spurs are crying out for a Kalvin Phillips type player, but the Leeds maestro has taken himself well out of Tottenham’s price range over the past two seasons.
Tottenham have needed a new striker for around five years.
Someone who can step up and offer both a backup option to Harry Kane and a potential partner is much-needed.
Perhaps the only person who has done this with some success in recent years was Fernando Llorente.
I would love to see Tottenham make a real statement signing by bringing in a Lautaro Martinez, Paulo Dybala, or Jonathan David, all of whom would cost big-bucks and definitely be the marquee purchase of the summer (even though Dybala could be a free agent, his wages would be huge).
It’s time for Levy and the Tottenham board to make a real statement to Conte, Kane and the Spurs fans about where the club is heading next. Fail to impress Conte, you may well end up losing your star striker and your supporters in the process…
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