Tottenham needs to make some space in the midfield
Maybe the most shocking part of the transfer window so far is that it appears Tottenham is taking more of a buy-first approach. The tradition under Daniel Levy’s leadership has been to work hard to sell some players to make some purchases possible.
The slow movement of players away from Tottenham ofttimes left the team with little time to pursue their primary targets. More often than not, the player Spurs would bring in was not the original target bandied about in the media.
Things may be changing with a couple of free transfer signings and the apparent addition of a new core piece in Bissouma. Now instead of working until the bitter end to sign players, Spurs will be working to move some players on.
Tottenham has an accumulation of midfielders
Not even including Bryan Gil, who we see more as an attacker, Tottenham has seven central midfielders in the squad. If two more midfielders come in, that will give Conte nine players, which is far too many for what at most represents three positions, although mainly two, in Conte’s scheme.
The moves that seem to be most desirable for the club are selling Ndombele and Lo Celso. While seven is still likely too many, Sarr, who is still only 19, could end up on loan again.
Moving Lo Celso seems straightforward, with Villarreal wanting to keep the Argentine after a successful loan. The question will come down to money, but when everyone involved wants something to happen, magically, the money gets worked out. So we should expect Lo Celso to be sold or, at worst, loaned back to Villarreal with an option or obligation to buy.
Alternatively, moving Ndombele is likely to be far more burdensome for Tottenham. The Frenchman’s loan back to Lyon started strong but ultimately fluttered more than flew.
Ultimately, Ndombele will go down as the right move for the wrong player when Mauricio Pochettino‘s team needed some on-field leadership. Spurs hope to recoup some of his massive fees and move on.
Even once Paratici moves Lo Celso and Ndombele, he has the Winks issue to resolve. Although the idea of Winks being part of a cup-winning team at Spurs has a real feel-good sense, more likely his time is on at N17. Potentially a make weight for Richarlison at Everton or maybe dealt there or elsewhere independent of another move. Regardless, Winks will likely also transfer away from north London.
If Paratici can move three players out while bringing the two we need in, then and only then will the engine room tune-up be complete.