Even the staunchest Defoe follower will admit there is no way on Earth that Jermain could lead the Spurs attack next season...completely on his own...and with Kane looking as if it may take a little longer than we had hoped for him to make the grade in the 1st team (if at all) we have no option but to buy strikers...fast.
Links with Sturridge, Adebayor, Lewandowski, Remy, Damiao – and to a (far) lesser extent, Huntelaar, Higuain (dream on) and even Hulk (haha) continue to bounce around the media but we STILL haven’t signed 1, let alone the minimum 2 that we all know we need.
So who are we going to end up with, realistically?
Well, despite rumours of money being far less of a barrier lately (new deal for Bale, potential wages for Adebayor) I can’t see Levy abandoning all reason and blowing stacks like a Manchester City or a CFC for example – we simply do not have the same financial backing. It’s highly likely that we will still be tighter than a gnats rear end with transfer fees paid so we are going to have to make the best of it.
The record fee paid for any player is approximately £16.5m for Modric as we all (hopefully) know and whether or not we top that remains to be seen. A healthy profit (from fees alone) is imminent as even AVB has now confirmed that Luka will more than likely be on his way very soon so are we to continue in a similar vein and buy with a sell-on profit always possible? Of course.
Therefore we can re-assess the list above and make a case for each ‘rumour’ in comparison to our biggest outlay.
Sturridge – case already made – fringe player at CFC, only 22, ‘reasonable’ wages, can play either centre forward or in either wide attacking position in the 433 formation; transfer fee probably in the region of £10m and for a player of that age that represents a potential bounty if he can take that final step from being a very good player to a great player. This one must have Levy with £ signs flashing up in his eyes but would CFC want to sell to us in light of the refusal to let them get their hands on Modders?
Adebayor – we’ve heard for a while now that we are on the verge of signing him on a permanent deal (about time) and with a possible transfer fee of just £5m-£6m how can this represent anything other than a 1st class, A1 example of a classic Levy deal? Sounds like his wage demands are still an issue, although if he is given a signing-on fee of about £5m would he really be that concerned about a drop? And of course, if things didn’t work out under the new manager then there is a real chance of a higher transfer fee being received at a later date (he is still only 28).
Lewandowski – fresh from winning the Bundesliga with Dortmund (22 goals in 34 league appearances) and a disappointing Polish Euro 2012 campaign where he scored the opening goal of the tournament, a few clubs have since been linked with the 23 year old. The speculated transfer fee to land him is in the region of £20m so that would smash our record. And as Dortmund have already lost a key player in Kagawa to MU would they be willing to sell another of their main assets...chances look slim, although you can’t help but feel excited about this one (even Marvelous Marv, friend, colleague, season ticket holder agrees here), and at just 23 it isn’t unreasonable to expect a potential future profit should a Real or a Barca come calling and he does look like a class act.
Remy – we know that ‘Arry scouted him several times, and also that the player has previously stated that he wanted to come to Spurs, but under ‘Arry. If the latest rumours are true then he is making noises about being unsettled again. His strike rate is not particularly world class (12 in 29 league games last season) but he can play in the wider positions as well, and would probably be available for a similar £20m ‘ish’ fee. At 25 and currently on the way back from injury he wouldn’t be my 1st choice but being more versatile than Lewandowski he could be more appealing to Levy and co.
Damiao – do any of us know a great deal about South American football, other than the most unbelievable players tend to come from there? Have any of us seen him play 1st hand (and I don’t mean Youtube videos)? Not such a well-known commodity as others we’re being linked with and also unlikely to be released at this moment in time by Internacional (already rumoured to have rejected 1 bid from us). We may be able to snap him up for a little more, very close to the Luka benchmark so don’t rule this one out. His strike rate isn’t to be sniffed at (approximately 1 in 2) but I see no signs of our ‘special relationship’ with Internacional here (or with Oscar for that matter) although it has been pointed out that there is only an agreement in place for us having first dibs on any player coming through their ranks as a ‘homegrown’ player.
Well, despite rumours of money being far less of a barrier lately (new deal for Bale, potential wages for Adebayor) I can't see Levy abandoning all reason and blowing stacks like a Manchester City or a CFC for example – we simply do not have the same financial backing.
And so we come to the far less likely targets – Huntelaar, Higuain and Hulk.
Hulk may only be being linked to us because of AVB, and I really can’t see this happening. The fee would probably be double that of Modric which would obviously rule him out (if we are to be celebrating naked in the streets after Levy spends that kind of amount on 1 player then my hard earned cash is on Moutinho). Last season returned 16 in 26 (league) but the season before that was 23 in 26 (let’s comfort ourselves on the fact that he’s obviously in decline).
Higuain was bandied about as being in a part-exchange deal for Modric (but then so have Carvalho – no thanks, he’s an old man for Pete’s sake, and Sahin who really dug his heels in and refused to come). I tend to think that Higuain would have the same stance as Sahin and with 22 in 35 league games I think this deal will remain a dream.
Last but not least, Huntelaar. VDV is apparently good mates with The Hunter but it seems more and more likely that VDV is about to join him (in Germany at least). Huntelaar looked, to be fair, bloody woeful at Euro 2012 but then so did most of Holland’s players. But you really cannot argue with 29 goals in 32 league games. I think we missed the boat here and should have snapped him up when Real let him go because at the age of 28 (29 in August) I don’t think an outlay of €17m (alleged release clause) will now reap many rewards.
So that concludes the assessment of the (recently rumoured) options. Perhaps we will all be surprised and end up with Falcao instead – or be completely unsurprised to hear that Ba has signed.
Whoever we do sign, the need is apparent as I’m sure we all agree...but I wonder who everyone else fancies?