5 Strikers Tottenham Hotspur Should Target to Fill the Boots of Jermain Defoe

Thomas CooperFeatured ColumnistMarch 26, 2014

5 Strikers Tottenham Hotspur Should Target to Fill the Boots of Jermain Defoe

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    Jermain Defoe has scored three times already since joining Toronto FC, marking a successful start to his time in Major League Soccer. At his former club, Tottenham Hotspur, life has moved on too.

    Still, the England international has left a void—at least in terms of numbers in attack—the North Londoners could well look to fill this summer.

    Pinpointing striker targets Tottenham should identify is partly down to speculation and opinion, but even taking a cue from recent media reports, Spurs could do worse than looking to bring in the subjects of some of these articles.

    Read on for a further look at these players, as well as a couple more who could do a good job at White Hart Lane.

Romelu Lukaku

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    On Tuesday, the Daily Telegraph's Matt Law reported that Tottenham "have made Romelu Lukaku, Chelsea’s £25 million-rated striker, one of their top summer transfer targets."

    Law mentions Spurs were interested in Lukaku—currently on loan at Everton—last summer. Whether a move for him would ever have been a goer is debatable, in large part because of his disagreeable relationship with former Spurs boss Andre Villas-Boas during their time together at Chelsea.

    ESPN FC notes that Lukaku came out against the Portuguese, and then a little later spoke with less hostility about his former coach.

    With this no longer an obstacle, if Chelsea are willing to sell and the player is open to a move to North London, Lukaku would be as close a thing to a guarantee as Spurs are likely to find.

    The Belgium international has scored 29 Premier League goals over the last two campaigns (last season with West Bromwich Albion). At 6'3", he is physically imposing with power to match, but nimble enough so as not to be cumbersome.

    Having already proven himself a capable scorer in England, at 20, there is a lot of potential upside to his career too.

    In Emmanuel Adebayor and Harry Kane, Spurs already have a couple of strikers who are similar height-wise and not far removed in playing style.

    Unless the object would be to assemble a notably sizable front line, one would likely make way in the event of Lukaku arriving in order to free up space for a little variation.

Javier Hernandez

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    Javier Hernandez's stock has gradually fallen since the then-22-year-old's strong debut Premier League season in 2010-11.

    The Manchester United striker's diminishing returns have had more to do with Sir Alex Ferguson and now David Moyes, favouring other forwards ahead of the goal-poacher.

    Consequently, his form has suffered more this year with little opportunity to establish any rhythm and consistency.

    Linked again with a move to Tottenham by The Mirror's Ben Curtis, last summer this writer pondered the possibility of them signing the Mexican following media speculation in The Independent, among others, about a move.

    The same concerns about Hernandez being too similar to Roberto Soldado are still an issue so long as he is at the club. In the event of the Spaniard being transferredwhich is far from a giventhe man they call Chicharito would certainly make for a strong replacement.

    His eight goals in 2013-14 do not sound like much, but it is not a bad return given his lack of minutes.

    Spurs would hope he would easily hit double figures in Premier League play with a regular starting role, as he did in each of his previous three seasons in England.

    Hernandez and Soldado would not be mutually exclusive as forward options in the right setup either. However, finding the right balance between them and those around them might take more work than the club would be willing to wait for.

Loic Remy

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    Newcastle United's on-loan forward, Loic Remy, has been linked with Tottenham going back to the days of Harry Redknapp at the club—The Mirror's John Cross was touting a move back in late 2011.

    Redknapp eventually signed Remy, but for Queens Park Rangers, with whom he is currently still contracted.

    The Sunday People's Alan Oliver has brought up interest from Spurs again in the present, though he also notes the Frenchman would prefer a move to Arsenal if possible.

    Nonetheless, Remy's 19 goals since moving to England have underlined the main reason he might still appeal to the North London club.

    He is also quicker than either of the players already mentioned in this article, or the strikers currently at Spurs. This is no prerequisite for them targeting anyone, but it's an attractive potential attribute for an attack that too often has been one-pace.

    For a move in a slightly different direction then, Remy could be ideal—especially if QPR do not get promoted from the Championship and are not in a position to demand a huge transfer fee.

Josip Drmic

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    Nurnberg and Switzerland attacker Josip Drmic was recently linked with a move to Arsenal by Metro reporter Jamie Sanderson.

    The 21-year-old's 13 goals in Bundesliga this year for his relegation-battling side may have caught the eye on the red half of North London, but could Tottenham also be in for him?

    Bleacher Report's Allan Jiang certainly believes they should be pursuing him, if they are not already.

    According to Jiang, the versatile Drmic "possesses a playing style which transitions to the Premier League: Ambitious, quick, smart, two-footed, excellent finisher and can create his own shot."

    He makes a strong and detailed case for Spurs buying him—particularly if they decide to replace either Soldado or Erik Lamela this summer.

    Should Spurs look outside of England for the next addition to their forward ranks, Drmic is among the more realistic possibilities, if nothing else.

Targeting Player Development in-House

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    Should Tim Sherwood still be managing Tottenham next season, there is a good chance he might look down into the club's own talent pool of youngsters in helping to shape the look of his attack next season.

    The former club coach's familiarity with current first-team contributor Harry Kane, as well as younger forwards like Shaq Coulthirst and Souleymane Coulibaly, could well see him opt to put his faith in one of those if targets elsewhere do not materialiseor ultimately appeal.

    With Spurs often deploying a lone striker, the need to have four or five experienced options in the position is possibly not as desperate as in years past, when a front two was the norm.

    Bringing in a player from the youth team to back up three senior players might be more than enoughespecially if an emphasis is placed on supporting attacking midfielders.

    Sherwood might opt for a partnership up front moving forward, necessitating a little more strength in depth. Even then, he could just be the first Spurs boss in quite some time to prefer to develop a player in-house than spend big money on an outsider.