We’ve long been linked with a move for Micah Richards and this week there has been speculation about us signing Curtis Davies from Aston Villa. Both deals make a lot of sense in some ways, but not in others.
Richards and Davies both fall into a category of player that Redknapp has a history of signing. Whilst at Portsmouth he took on a few players who were rated as brilliant prospects in their youth and breathed new like into their careers, before they returned to the big time again. Glen Johnson, Lassana Diarra and our own Jermain Defoe all benefited from Harry’s trademark arm-round-the-shoulder routine.
Micah Richards certainly falls into this category. Not so long ago he was a member of the England side while still a teenager and being touted for a move to either United or Chelsea for £20m+. Now the apparent going price is only £9m and he’s nowhere near an England World Cup squad, despite the fact that there are few obvious contenders for the right back position.
He is still only 21 years old and yet has a reasonable amount of experience, having played over 100 games for City. There have been question marks about his attitude and concentration, but he’s still very young and certainly not at an age where he should be written off. With his pace, strength and ability on the ball, he has all the attributes to be a success, either at full back, centre back, or even as a defensive midfielder.
Richards is the exact type of player that will benefit from working with Redknapp and the experienced coaches that we have at Spurs. If you consider the way that Assou-Ekotto and Bale have improved during Harry’s reign, then there’s no reason to think that a similar recovery job couldn’t be done with Richards.
Where the signing perhaps doesn’t make much sense, is the fact that we’re already pretty well stocked at right back (some would say over stocked). Hutton is clearly for sale, but what happens to Naughton and Walker if Richards joins our ranks?
There is talk that Naughton could be sold. He’s not been given a chance for us, but he’s actually only a few months younger than Richards and yet has made far less progress in his career. With Richards also having the advantage of being a very versatile player, bringing him in would definitely improve our squad, even if it doesn’t seem like a massive priority.
The case for Curtis Davies is less clear. He does seem like a very capable player and only lost his place in the Villa team when a shoulder injury kept him out for a number of months. With Woodgate still apparently a long way from recovery, Davies might be a decent addition.
There are a number of question marks though. If he can’t get in Villa’s admittedly very good defence and wants first team football, why would he come to Spurs where there is arguably even greater competition for places? Why for that matter would we need him, even with Woodgate out? We still have Dawson, King, Bassong and Kaboul available, with the likes of Corluka, Huddlestone and perhaps Richards, able to provide emergency cover.
That’s where the Curtis Davies deal doesn’t make sense to me. It could well just be that some journalist has realised that he’s available for transfer, seen that Villa are interested in the likes of Keane and Jenas, and put two and two together.
The Verdict: We don’t need either player, but it could be that in Richards, Harry sees the potential for a player to grow into a world class talent and is eager to snap him up. If we sign him then there is surely no way that we will also make a move for Davies.