The Tottenham rumor mill has been blowing winds distinctly from the Low Countries recently. Given the success of those lands—excluding Luxembourg—you could understand why people are paying more attention to Belgium and the Netherlands lately.
Outside of the Christian Benteke whirlwind, the Spurs have been knocking on the door of FC Twente about Belgian winger Nacer Chadli according to Metro, the Mirror and the Mail. While in the same region, Tottenham have apparently given a look at Standard Liege’s Ghanaian full-back Daniel Opare.
Acquiring both players would give Tottenham two possible starters or very secure bench options as the duo can cover the outside lanes. Both operate as dual-sided players with Chadli a roaming figure across the front of the entire offensive side of the pitch.
Chadli and Opare look like players that would be on the way in if there are corresponding moves out. Benoit Assou-Ekotto has been touted in the out column before while Clint Dempsey has recently been mentioned as possibly being floated out and will be discussed shortly.
Given the current rise of the Belgium national team, adding components that are playing in the squad certainly does no harm to Tottenham’s lineup. Whether or not the squad has a Belgium day to commemorate the number of Belgians in the squad has yet to be determined.
¿Adios Deuce Mios?
So, why exactly would the Spurs be willing to put Deuce on the loose? The Mirror has noted that West Brom have at least inquired about the multi-use frontman but it seems odd to lose a consistent performer from last term.
Dan Fitch at ESPNFC has two valid points on the subject. One is simple: cash. The other is as simple: age.
Getting Dempsey off the books for potentially more than the £6 million Tottenham splashed out on the American would be right in line with Daniel Levy movements of the past. Getting that number, however, dictates the move is done this summer.
It is not as if Dempsey could not make the cut. Rather, Dempsey is now 30 and with the squad looking at players like Chadli and already holding Gylfi Sigurdsson, getting the most value for Dempsey means he’ll have to be punted now.
Fitch argues that Dempsey likely fits into a 4-3-3 better than the 4-2-3-1 this term and that the initial position behind the forward was not Dempsey’s best spot.
As his play with the US has shown, Dempsey is more than adequate behind a forward, just not a Jermain Defoe-type forward. Had Emmanuel Adebayor been ready to go at the start of the campaign, perhaps Dempsey could have been a fill-in for the departed Rafael van der Vaart more effectively.
It feels odd that with Under Armour as the Spurs’ kit maker, the club would want to disassociate itself with easily the most marketable figure in the US. However, with NBC Sports Network using Gareth Bale as the poster child for their coverage, it might ease the lack of recognizable figures from a financial standpoint.
(Note: Having scoured the web just before publishing, this last bit is the same argument that Zac Wassink used at Yahoo! Sports. Great minds and all that.)
Regardless, Dempsey was a major contributor to the club last term and his presence will certainly be missed if he ends up elsewhere next term.
The Unkillable Beast
Surely you did not think that the “Gareth Bale to ‘X’” rumors were done and dusted, did you?
As regular as the sun rising and setting, the next murmurs of the Welshman moving somewhere else are coming through.
Chief executive Ed Woodward said the following in regards to transfer fees:
“We haven't got money burning a hole in our pocket but we have got a strategy on player purchases and if David wants to go after a stellar player he can do that.”
Of course, both papers give the impression that those “players” are Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo. Cue the look of surprised faces emanating from the four corners of the Earth.
As if to placate the idea that Bale is still reserved a spot, a brief story in the same publication about the lack of roster spots available this term at Madrid made pains to point out that the No. 11 kit is still vacant. While that should not be newsworthy, the piece just has to mention that the kit is “supposedly” reserved for Bale.
September cannot come fast enough some days.