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Tottenham executive director Donna-Maria Cullen has jumped to the defence of Daniel Levy following continued criticism of the chairman’s approach to transfers.

Spurs are yet to make a signing this summer, which is nothing new – the club often leaves its dealings until late in the window.

But Tottenham fans expected different this season. Comments made by manager Mauricio Pochettino towards the end of the 2017/18 campaign suggested the club would do its transfer business more quickly than usual this time around.

That clearly hasn’t been the case, and Spurs now have less than two weeks to make a couple of vital squad additions while shipping out players unwanted by Pochettino.

But Cullen has defended Tottenham’s lack of movement in the market, claiming Levy’s methods aren’t particularly different to those of other big clubs.

“Daniel works closely with the managers and always has done,” Cullen said during Tottenham’s pre-season tour of the US (via Sky Sports).

“He clearly identifies targets, works to get them, and we are no different to other clubs in not necessarily being able to acquire who might be top of your list for whatever reason. There are so many other moving parts in that whole scenario.

“Mauricio is very relaxed. I also think there was a misinterpretation of his comments [at the end of last season]. He will say that what he said was not about going out and spending money.

“Sometimes there’s a degree of frustration at how much is written [about Daniel] that isn’t accurate. But what you get with him is he is so focused on delivering for this club – and that’s why any of us who work around him think it’s grossly unfair.

“The point is if he was a chairman who came out and spoke every time there was an assertion that we weren’t comfortable with, you guys would stop listening after a while.

“When he does speak he does it because he’s got something to say rather than just responding. He is so modest, shy and understated and it’s never about him.”

Regardless of Cullen’s comments, many Spurs fans will continue to criticise Levy and demand signings are made sooner in future windows.

What do you think? Is Levy deserving of criticism or is the Tottenham chairman harshly treated? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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63 COMMENTS

  1. Levy controls everything and decides who is bought and leaves. The manager is powerless. Profit before trophies is the ENIC policy. Everything is the same as before and Potch is powerless. Second rate bargain buys are difficult to sell as we can see and levy expects top dollar whilst paying rock bottom for signings. She is under his employ so enough said.

  2. People have short memories of the mediocre Spurs – 3rd, 2nd, 3rd placed finishes, and world class stadium and training facilities. We are punching well above our weight. I think he is a top top chairman.

    • As a Spurs fan of 50 years and a season ticket holder for the last 30 I couldn’t agree more. In Levy and Lewis we have two money men who are also life long spurs fans. That means that ultimately they want the same thing as the rest of us. Levy always said that there was no point building a super stadium if we didn’t reflect that on the pitch. The last three seasons have proven that he is a man of his word. No team gets it right in the transfer market all the time but the current success is testament to his abilities. I wouldn’t swap him for any other Chairman!

  3. How many years have Enic and Levy been at the helm and with nothing to show in regards to trophies. Any manager with that record and in less time would have been sacked by Levy. The new stadium is just another cash cow for Enic too. Lastly, Pochettino signed a new contract on the basis he would be backed financially and more importantly that new signings would happen earlier in the window. Clearly Levy is not a man of his word. Enics record is proof that profits are more important than trophies.

  4. Of course, she’s right! Spurs have advanced and improved more than virtually any other club and most especially have provided high quality, highly entertaining football. Regrettably a long history of failings has left a legacy of “fans” whose joy comes from attacking their own club.
    People and newspaper reporters bitch about trophies as if they really cared about them and actually spent time gazing at the trophy case. I support high quality enjoyable football. I’m delighted that we are contenders and play football well and professionally. Levy has contributed to that at Tottenham.
    Of course, Levy is going to make mistakes, Of course we are going to pay “too much” for some acquisitions.
    I don’t think that Levy has done anything “on his own” since Adebayor which taught him a great lesson.
    The club is in better shape this year than it has ever been.
    Of course, the club is going to be run like a business. It is a business! I am amazed at all the attacks on Levy for not immediately authorizing the expenditure of millions of pounds to buy some aging star that we don’t need. It’s going to be an exciting year. Enjoy!

    • I agree Druid. While all of us Spurs fans want to see trophies and better finishes…it has to be recognized that Levy has a great job over the years (even though us fans don’t always agree with his policies). It’s very obvious that none of us know how to run a club, Levy obviously does. Do we spend like City or United or Liverpool…nope….but Levy (and MoPo) have seen Spurs get better and better over the last few years with a state of the art training location, better finishes in the PL over the last 3/4 years than before, a brand new stadium that is close to completion.

      I would argue that Levy has put Spurs in a position to do very well in the forthcoming years.

    • Only a fool buys a football club to make profits. Secondly, there is no excuse for leaving transfers to the last minute as that does not help Pochettino. Clubs that buy in January is because of panic. Whether you like it or not teams and players are remembered for trophies. I remember under Harry Redknapp Spurs being top of the table and playing the best football in England yet come January transfer time Levy refused to get the cash out and with a couple of signings instead of cheap waste of time players like Saha and Nelsen we could have won the league. When it comes to who and when to sign he is hopeless. Eventually Pochettino will get tired and leave

      • You may be right about MoPo leaving eventually Janine. BUT, they all leave eventually. MoPo is about as steady a manager in the 3 decades.

        I don’t think there is a Spurs fan around that understands the philosophy of LML (Last Minute Levy).

        • When Pochettino leaves it will be because of Levy and Enic nothing else. Levy needs Pochettino more than what Pochettino needs Levy.

  5. Best chairman in the league, we have a new stadium , a very good squad a manager everybody wants and the best training facilities in Europe , what’s he doing wrong . The worst time to buy players at inflated prices is after world cups and euro championships , how many very expensive failures have there been after these tournaments. Levy knows this we will have a good winter window if we need to have. Have faith boys keep the faith.

      • Dumb comment KevMeist. I remember the horrible years in the 1990s so am grateful to the position we are in under Levy. Has taken time to get that right manager in Pochettino but we are doing things in the right way and i can’t wait for the new season to start.

        • I am also grateful for our recent record. Would I like to see trophies….of course I would. There is no Spurs fan that wouldn’t want to see more trophies.

          I’m not sure what part of my comment that you think is dumb? My comment is that Yoko was bought after the Euros and in most (maybe all) Spurs fan eyes is a flop at Spurs. In fact, there were many Newcastle fans that were glad to see the back of him and were gob-smacked at the amount of money that Spurs agreed to pay.

  6. Giggs and Peter Jackson have it absolutely right. I have supported the Spurs for nearly 60 years since I was a little lad. I remember good times and bad but for me the club is the best it has been for many years. There have been great teams but never the sense of solidity we have now largely thanks to ENIC , Daniel, and Mauricio.COYS.

  7. A new stadium with seriously overpriced tickets. You can’t continue to just buy young players with potential and a sell on value. Nobody is asking for Levy to spend billions but we just need 1 or 2 world class players to get us to that next level. Both Levy and Pochettino do NOT know what is required to win trophies as they both have no experience in doing so. Coaches like Mourinho do know. Levy and Enic want to do things on the cheap and whether he or Enic like it it is us genuine fans who are going to have to cough up a hell of a lot to watch games at their new cash cow so our opinions count for more than theirs especially those of Donna Maria Cullen

      • People are entitled to their opinions. I listen to and respect them all. Football is only a game it’s not life. Clearly the club means a lot to fans irrelevant to their views.

      • KevMeist did you actually read and properly understand what he wrote before opening your big mouth? Gerry bought up one or 2 relevant points and he is entitled to share his views. You sound like a snowflake.

        • Straight in to abuse to me? You think that I am not entitled to my views? I have been a Spurs supporter for 63 years…I have seen many managers and fans come and go. I was born in Tottenham, Yes, I understood what Gerry brought up. I do NOT understand you getting up on your high horse though.

          • Lose a hip Kev. We all know you are a lame gooner in disguise. Mug. Must be that time of the month for you. Cretin. Jog along

    • You don t like it … don t buy. What s 1000 1200 1500 pounds for a a season ticket when you pay 650£ per month rent for a room in NE London

      • NOT a comment to Salas but to the idiot that posts above as “KevMeistIsAPaedophileGooner” as there was no reply allowed to that post.

        How is elementary school treating you nowadays?
        Did you have to repeat the same year again this year?

        As I said above…I was born in Tottenham and have been a Spurs fan for 63 years.

          • Sheesh, some of you guys are kinda ridiculous. What happened to civility? Most here are civil, just a couple that are not.

        • Bloody lol. Is it KevMeisty or KevMeisy. You don’t even know your own name. Doubt you could spot Tottenham on a map. What’s your name now?

      • London is seriously overpriced and for many things you don’t get value for money compared to many cities in the world and that includes quality of life. Try telling those figures to genuinely working class folk especially those with kids. Even the Tottenham Supporters Trust has issues with the pricing. There is no point filling most of a stadium with fly by for the fashion corporate fans when the real fans and their families will be priced out.

        • Seems to be the way for most large cities, doesn’t it?

          I live in Florida now (although born in Tottenham). Prices here are much more reasonable than London. The weather is better too , although July, August and September are pretty hot and humid here.

          • Usa is 60 percent cheaper than the uk. Am based in Mexico and just the daily access to fresh water and food is like being in a different world in comparision. There is no deathly silence on streets, shops, cafes, etc are open after 5, people have and make time to stop and talk to you on the streets, no paying for bags at the supermarket, your money takes you further ie cost of living and buying a house with a pool if you want and savings options in banks with great returns interestwise. So much more i can add to that.

          • Looking at most of your posts Kev, were you born in Tottenham as it’s pretty hard to tell if you were or not? LOL bloody LOL

  8. Having read all the above comments and all bringing up correct points i still cannot fathom why Levy does not give the best defender in the league and one of the best in Europe a new contract, ie Toby Alderweiweld. I would sooner transfer money be spent on that than a possible overpriced player who could flop. Surely it is about rewarding your best employees correctly. There is no excuse not to and a shame if he is sold. Toby has done nothing wrong. But then i guess Levy knows what he is doing

  9. I agree John…I sure hope that Toby stays (maybe he will not get as high a wage as he wants but a substantial increase). The trouble with all of these pay hikes that it just makes the next person on the current roster want more also, no?

    • Football research has shown that clubs that pay the best wages to coaches and players are often those that win trophies. If Toby will not get a new contract then this is amateur business decision making by Levy as you could lose him for 25 million which is less than half Levy would look for now. Nevermind a decent replacement being signed. Never leave things to the last moment as that can invite problems.

  10. A short one here. How many years have Enic been at Spurs yet not even ONE trophy. People need to judge their whole time at the club not just since Pochettino has been here. Levy is lucky to have Pochettino.

  11. It’s not a fan’s job to worry about the financial performance of his club. I should worry about how Apple or Microsoft performs financially, but not Spurs. It’s not as if Spurs spend 50M on a player they would go bankrupt tomorrow, so the core issue is that there is no reinforcement at all. Most fans are not asking Levy to splurge like Liverpool did, nor do they deny Levy’s accomplishments the last few years, but to say or imply it’s fine not to have a single reinforcement at all — that is just blind trust. Don’t bury our heads in the sand. Give him credit only where it is due.

    • Comment of the day goes to Kenny Blake. Kenny your valid points are what most posters here and I dare mention more do not see. Nobody can argue Levy has done a great job of the business side however the footballing side is not an area he is qualified or experienced enough in. That is the role of Pochettino. Levy leaves signings to the end as he wants a cheap deal without thinking of what is best for the team and Pochettino’s needs. He is not thinking like a coach. As Kenny said a 50 million signing or two won’t bankroll the club but Levy is not proactive and brave enough to take that final step. If you look at how many years Enic have been at the club it’s obvious that even winning just 1 trophy is not their goal. Too many Spurs fans are easily fooled.

      • Poch is like a wife every man would want. She doesn’t spend a lot of his money. She doesn’t moan in public about how frugal he is. She takes care of his kid’s homework so he always gets in top 4 of his class. Most importantly, she doesn’t run to another richer man when he comes courting. Yet, twice a year when she asks for home appliance upgrades, he puts her off by telling her to wait until there is a sale. Either the sale never comes or the appliances are all sold out. Worse, he occasionally buys her an expensive appliance which turns out to be a lemon. So, would a wife like this stay forever?

        • Perfectly put. Pochettino leaves it will be because of Levy and Enic nobody else. You can’t keep acting so naively and cheaply as well as expecting Pochettino to continue to produce miracles against the odds like Levy does.

    • Spot on we fell short last season due to lack of strength in depth 2 quality players needed now, this is an investment even if Martial cost 70m under poch will be worth 150 in 18 month’s

  12. I agree with many of the comments here (maybe not all). As many have mentioned in these comments…I suspect that many of us do NOT understand what drives Levy to be “last Minute” about transfers. MoPo has made it very clear numerous times that he likes his “new” players to be at the club for all of the pre-season training. That, apparently, doesn’t work for LML.

  13. I agree, but let’s give credit where it is due. Okay so Spurs are not winning trophies, that’s not Levy’s fault that should be aimed at Poch, his coaching team and the players to account for. Let’s see, Levy as an executive has given them a fantastic training facility, a young squad, may I add most of whom have come through a successful transfer recruitment process and which are the envy of every club around the world with the majority of them old and new contesting in the last 4 in the world cup. Spurs are again a glamorous club under his tenure and widely spoken of. A brand new stadium being built with the very profits and money he is accused of making for ENIC is being pumped back into the club.

    So I agree it is harsh and disgraceful by the many that blame Levy for a lack of on-field success. Maybe by the end of this season we can blame Levy only if Poch does not win anything with this golden generation of players at the club and if Levy fails to change the manager then only we can criticize him. So target your criticism on Poch and the players for not doing their bit on the field and not having the mentality to have at least 2 trophies already in the trophy cabinet.

    • Good points. Poch has a lot of positives however as last seasons fa cup semi final again showed he doesn’t know HOW to win trophies or those types of big games. Mourinho does. Look at Arsenal they are meant to be worse than us but with a worst team still win a couple of fa cups. At times Poch’s tactics and player selection leave us missing out.

  14. I am calling it, here is how it is all going down:

    Toby + 25mn for Martial
    Grealish at 25Mn
    Zaha at 50Mn

    That’s our transfer budget right there, 100Mn and as usual, Levy will sell a good few at inflated prices so that the net spend is low.

    We need the home grown players for premier league and CL squads, so Zaha and Grealish will give us that and we need the Martial signing for the so-called talented big name. Zaha is the stand out signing I believe. Expect to see more swap deals and players + cash deals happening which is why this is all taking longer then usual. Also a theory is that Poch knew the transfer deadline was goin to be 09 Aug and his cryptic end of season statement talks to this new date as the early transfer date as he eluded to. How gullible are we as fans right?

    • Spot on comment how much better would we be with Martial and zaha strength in depth it would be an investment success means more money for the club

  15. Zaha. Is that really the best we can do? We have Moura who is miles better. Talking about scrapping the barrel. Spend the money on Tobys new contract would be wiser.

    • Disagree, Moura while by default earns a great reputation only because he is Brazilian. He has good touches but looks rather lazy. Zaha has a proven premier league record and is a game changer. The few times Moura came on in games last season for cameos, he showed touches of brilliance but not consistently over many minutes. He looks a shadow of Willian at best.

      • Sometimes it takes time for foreign players to adapt. Is Zaha really the calibre of player we should be looking at? Again we are leaving it too late to sign players. Levy is not proactive enough and money wasted on the likes of Zaha would be more wisely spent on a new contract for Toby.

  16. Agree with Marek. Inflated prices for the likes of Zaha and Kondogbia when Palace could be getting Max Meyer for FREE. Come on Levy it’s bad enough what is happening with Toby but that’s just unacceptable

  17. In a nutshell if we and specifically Levy does not change our transfer spending policy eventually Pochettino will leave and we will never seriously challenge for the title. Levy must be crazy or naive to think the current system of signing players is the way to go. Just look at Fulham and even West Ham in just this transfer window as a few examples.

    • Who says we don’t have a great squad assembled? If Atletico Madrid can win with a squad of non galacticos why not Spurs. Griezman and Costa, Torres before him and so on were all unknowns signed as young talents. You don’t need big names to win titles, but if you can big talent then yes that’s Levy’s secret sauce right there, it works, just need the right manager/coach to get them over the line.

      • Agree with the last part ie a coach who knows how to win big games like fa cup semi finals. Don’t judge Levy under the Pochettino years but the full 17 and not even 1 trophy to show for it when they have sacked managers for less. Levy is lucky to have Pochettino and his continual last minute transfers not all of which have been a success will eventually see Pochettino leave. Sometimes you need the finished product and not all of them cost millions and millions. Spending 60 million on a world class player won’t bankrupt the club at all. Levy is doing things as much as possible on the cheap.
        When Spurs under Redknapp were top of the table and playing the best footie in the land he ignorantly refused to back Redknapp with a couple of proper loan signings at least which cost us the title. Instead we got cheap has beens like Nelsen and Saha.
        My biggest criticism of Pochettino however is like last seasons fa cup semi final showed, his team selections have cost us games, plus the tactics and lack of knowledge unlike Mourinho in knowing how to win trophies. This is as good as it will get and this expensive new stadium will just be another cash cow for Enic.
        Sometimes whether it is a coach or player like Toby you have to pay the best as research has accurately showed the most successful teams are those who pay the best salaries.

      • Righteous1 as you use the word “great” it would be better to say a team with potential. Great teams HAVE won trophies and KNOW what is required to win them. Atletico Madrid are in that bracket just look at how many trophies they have won in the last 8 years. Their transfer policy is also more wiser and proactive than us and don’t naively leave things to the last minute. Let me ask you in the 17 years of Levy and Enic’s secret sauce as you put it, what have we won?

        • Ricky, I see where you are going with this, lets meet halfway, so then “great potential”.

          But you can’t blame Levy for Spurs not winning a trophy. We had sniffs at 2 league title challenges and bottled it, several FA cup semi finals and bottled it, a League cup final and bottled it, we bottled it in the last 2 CL campaigns. Was Levy not the Chairman when Spurs won the League Cup with a poor squad in 07/08?

          Agree, he got it wrong by not bringing in a top quality trophy winning coach, but he went in for Juande Ramos who had just come in after back to back Europa League wins with Sevilla and got burned,even today and when he brought in Poch he was and is not yet a trophy winning coach, no guarantees in this game just luck. So if you give this squad to a Guardiola,Conte, Rafa , Mourinho, Klopp, what could be? Should Levy sack Pochetino now, for whom?

          • In 17 years what have we won under Levy? Look at his managerial appointments, his naive transfer window policy and how many player flops he has sanctioned buying it’s clear when it comes to football his judgement is a joke. You can’t deny that.
            What’s even worse is that he can give himself a big salary increase but not pay Toby what he wants which is less than Levy’s salary.
            The fact that with our recent top 4 finishings he won’t push the boat out and bring in a couple of top signings that won’t bankrupt us but will take us to the next level is even more evidence that he isn’t interested in on field success.
            The sooner Enic and Levy are out the better. We are being charged crazy prices for the new stadium yet Manchester Uniteds prices are cheaper. Talk about paying for a faulty product.
            All that money they have raked in over the years it is obvious where it is going.

          • Would any of those coaches want to work under Levy especially considering how ignorantly he operates in a transfer window? That Levy enjoys selling top players to rivals?

  18. Righteous you are correct. However Levy will need to realise that to get a top drawer manager he will HAVE to pay a top salary. How good he would be in verbally convincing one to come i am not so sure about. The Toby issue is evidence he won’t pay the best to get the best. But giving himself a pay rise well above what any player is receiving is acceptable.

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