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Leandro Damiao: A potential Spurs transfer target?
Christian Benteke, Gonzalo Higuain and Leandro Damiao have been among the strikers linked with a move to Tottenham in recent months. Regardless of whom Villas-Boas is interested in adding to his squad, in attack and elsewhere, the Portuguese and the transfer brokers in the club hierarchy would be wise to establish their transfer targets early.
Spurs’ major summer transfer dealings are often only concluded when the new season has begun and there is only days or hours left before the transfer window closes. Roman Pavlyuchenko, Niko Kranjcar, Rafael van der Vaart, Scott Parker and Clint Dempsey have been among the notable players signed at this late stage.
Circumstances often dictate moves cannot be completed early, and ultimately, eventually agreeing a deal is the main thing. However there is little doubt that Spurs would have benefited from having players like the ones above signed prior to, or at least early in, preseason.
The chance for arrivals to settle in a new environment and get to know new teammates gives them a better chance of avoiding the process during the actual season. Van der Vaart made an impact almost immediately, but Dempsey took a few months to find his feet at Spurs.
It is helpful for the manager to have time to work with his new players before preparations ahead of competitive games preoccupy more of his time. Ideally too, Villas-Boas will want a clear idea of his best side as early as possible in the new campaign.
With Spurs likely to be competing for the signature of many of the same players with similarly-sized rivals at home and abroad, they will not want to miss out on a player a more proactive approach might have given them the edge in pursuing.