I’m not a member of the anti-Levy brigade. I can live with Spurs not actually spending any real money on transfers year after year, because I can see it’s for the greater good.
We’ll soon have a brand new stadium and it’s an expensive business. We saw how Arsenal struggled to pay for their’s and they had a lot of natural advantages over Tottenham in terms of how they were able to raise finance.
Yet though I generally support the way ENIC run the club and feel that they have largely done a good job, there are of course massive frustrations. Their tendency to sack the manager every couple of years has been one, while another is their infuriating tactic of leaving things too late in the transfer market.
With just a few days before the season starts Spurs are in the familiar position of being desperate to sign a new striker. At least these days we’re not looking for a ‘world class’ one. The emergence of Harry Kane ensures that a young up and coming one, or an older player willing to spend plenty of time on the bench, would be perfectly adequate.
We haven’t bought one because we’ve wanted to sell two strikers before we made a move. In theory this makes sense when you’re running on a tight budget. Work out how much you’ve got to spend before you start dishing out on new recruits.
The trouble is both Emmanuel Adebayor and Roberto Soldado are very difficult players to shift. Both the wrong side of 30 and on varying levels of high wages, Adebayor has a reputation as a troublemaker, while Soldado commands a relatively big fee as Tottenham look to recoup some of the fortune they paid for him.
Unsurprisingly neither deal has yet been done, though both are said to be imminent. Meanwhile, Spurs are in Germany on an ill-judged pre-season tournament just days before the season opener, with only one striker available.
In fairness, the early start to the season has contributed to this problem and our opening opponents Manchester United have a similar problem, with Wayne Rooney currently their only real option up front.
That said, the schedule comes as a surprise to no one. What Tottenham needed to do was to buy a striker a few weeks ago and take a leap of faith that they could shift Adebayor and Soldado. Of course that would put them in a weaker bargaining position when selling, but the same will now be true when we look to buy a forward and clubs know that we only have Harry Kane.
The difference is negligible. This insistence of getting the best deal for every player bought and sold makes negotiating a lengthy process which interferes with the manager’s preparations.
Considering that Spurs generally miss out on a Champions League place by a margin of a couple of dropped results, is it really worth it? With better prepared squads, the chances are we would have qualified at least once more than we have.
It’s a gamble worth taking but Levy doesn’t do gambles, at least not with transfers. Instead he’d rather gamble with Tottenham’s season, when he should really be chancing his arm on a striker.