The interest which Paris Saint Germain have shown in Andre Villas-Boas means that the Tottenham Chairman, Daniel Levy, must ensure negotiations with his manager over a new contract are completed successfully as AVB aims to bring stability to White Hart Lane.
Article written by Charlie BeeWhilst all reported deals and agreements have to be taken with a pinch of salt at the precarious position of the current footballing calendar there tends to be no smoke without fire – particularly when the more respected newspapers begin to report on the news. In our case, it’s both the reported deals for Gareth Bale as well as interest in manager Andre Villas-Boas from PSG. Although the latter looks to have died down in the wake of the appointment of Franco Baldini, his alleged £10million buy-out clause would be something we must be keen to eradicate to put off future interest. It’s in this situation that both the immediate and long-term future of our club lies directly in the hands of chairman Daniel Levy, who having overseen the growth of our club from lower-table strugglers to now be in the fray for Champions League qualification is unlikely to let either prospect leave without a fight.
To describe AVB as a prospect could be seen as somewhat patronising given the manner in which he led us to a fifth place finish last season and won the UEFA Cup with Porto in 2011, but he remains in the early stages of his career at just 35. However, the style of football he implemented upon us, dragging us from the tactical dark age of Harry Redknapp into competitors of the modern game in his first full season in the Premier League was always going to draw attention. Whilst the £10million release clause could be described as a poor clause from Levy, there is no conformation, however, upon this and anything reported within the papers is therefore pure speculation and very few of us predicted that he’d have such an immediate impact, many of us writing off the first season as an ‘adjustment period’.
AVB Can Bring Stability to Tottenham
The most important quality AVB offers however, is that of stability – something we’ve lacked in recent years, having had 13 different managers in the same space of time our North London rivals Arsenal, have had only Arsene Wenger. With a club like ours unable to rebuild a squad for each new manager, lacking the financial backing that Chelsea have, the capture of AVB on a more permanent contract should be Levy’s priority in the following season – however there are a few compromises that he will have to make to ensure that AVB stays at Spurs.
Roma’s recent parting with Director of Football, Franco Baldini, has set the Italian up with a position at Spurs, one not filled since the departure of Damien Comolli at Harry Redknapp’s insistence. Whilst Comolli’s results where somewhat mixed, bringing in Gareth Bale, Younes Kaboul, Dimitar Berbatov and Luka Modric, he also signed the less successful Alan Hutton, David Bentley and Vedran Corluka. Similarly his tenure at Liverpool was also somewhat strained, approving a £35million bid for Andy Carroll as well as signing Stewart Downing and Jordan Henderson for obscene amounts of money. Baldini, however, comes into the set-up with an air of experience, having worked with Fabio Capello at both Real Madrid and during his time as England manager.
Baldini’s appointment is certainly a leap of faith on Levy’s behalf, who will no longer be as active in the transfer role, yet his performance at Roma was an admirable one pushing through the likes of Erik Lamela, Marquinhos and Miralem Pjanic – of whom we have been strongly linked in the past. Our recently built training facilities, described as ‘state of the art’ certainly put us in pole-position to both attract and develop young talent.
Tottenham’s Transfer Budget
Ultimately the test for Levy has to be the transfer budget he provides AVB, enough to compete at the top level and gain Champions League football – even more important with Bale unlikely to stay if we fail to gain Champions League football next season. Whilst failing to back Redknapp is somewhat understandable in hindsight, himself openly declaring that he would’ve taken the England job had it been offered to him, to not back AVB could be potentially devastating to the future progress of the club.
The large amounts of money generated from finishing 5th in the Premier League would be enough to sign a couple of new players, combined with potential outgoings meaning we have a large sum to spend. Promisingly the return of both Sandro and Younes Kaboul act as almost new players such has been the length of the injuries they both suffered. It’s clear, however, there are many other areas which need to be strengthened.
The open declarations from Inter Milan and Corinthians of Tottenham’s interest in their players, prove that we are keen to get our business done early on in the transfer window and not repeat the mistakes of last season, leaving our dealings until the last minute. Our negotiations are even more crucial this season with an early match against Arsenal looming in the not-too-distant horizon, every point counts. That and I’m not having another down to the wire Champions League spot race…