With all the talk of Manchester United’s supposed interest in Harry Kane the subject of Tottenham Hotspur being a feeder club for the top four has risen again; with suspicions being uttered that Daniel Levy will eventually relent like he always does. Obviously, every club is literally a selling club, but it is said in a disparaging tone and meant as an insult to say that Spurs have no ambition other than to make money.
Smaller clubs are given the benefit of the doubt as it is something that they are seen to HAVE to do just to survive. But because Tottenham are usually on the cusp of being in the elite brand of clubs that regularly compete at the top, top level they are perceived to basically give up on the dream for the sake of a few million quid – probably for their training ground.
Of course, they have been offloading their top players to teams competing at a level above them for years, but what can they do when players want to leave? Michael Carrick, Dimitar Berbatov, Luka Modric and Gareth Bale are the main players to have been granted a transfer to ‘better themselves’.
Article continues below
These are top, top players who deserve/deserved to be playing in the Champions League every year and with Tottenham, Modric and Bale did reach the top four twice, but it was too irregular when you compare it to someone like Real Madrid.
Not every class player is a one club man like Matthew Le Tissier who wants to stay and fight for the cause. You cannot have bad feeling and sulkiness affecting the confines of the club should you force those players to stay. It’s funny because despite the accusations aimed at Levy saying he just wants the money rather than the prizes (although prizes will WIN them money) he is also seen as a tough negotiator, holding out for the highest possible price.
Article continues below
So he is not merely desperate to sell for the sake of it - accepting the first offer that comes his way – he would rather the players stay, but if not then he is going to make it hard for the clubs making the moves and worth Tottenham’s while. Two of those transfers broke records – Berbatov’s move to Man United was the biggest exchange between two British clubs for one player at the time, while Gareth Bale’s to Madrid is still, at the time of typing, a world record fee. It is, whether you like it or not, or mock it or not, the name of the game.
In the summer after the 2011-12 season when Spurs finished in the top four, but were denied entry due to Chelsea’s Champions League win, they also missed out on Eden Hazard. The Belgian said so himself that he would have gone to White Hart Lane three years ago if it was Spurs in Europe’s top competition.
Imagine if he had joined the club, what would that have done for their fortunes? They may have kept Modric and Bale too. Modric, Bale and Hazard in the same team – what a thought. So it just goes to show the fine line between keeping and acquiring players, and the buying and selling of players – it is not merely a case of ‘‘he wants to stay, but £20MILLION?! Ta very much.’’