Results for 2013/14 Season

Man U, Man C, Chelsea, Arsenal Spurs, Liverpool - a window of opportunity

10:30 am
Tottenham Hotspur have seen a window of opportunity and have set about taking long term advantage of it. The time was right to strike and strike they have.

It is no secret that Spurs have been seeking a striker, but not just any striker, no, a quality proven regular goalscorer of top 4 standard. That has angered many supporters who wanted the club to stop chasing targets they felt they were unrealistic and buy almost anyone just to fill a hole.

Unbelievably in January some were shouting for Gary Hooper at Celtic to be signed and expected us to pay £10 million for a striker in a division where the opposition source players from League Two. Hooper has now left Celtic for Premier League rivals Norwich City for half that figure.

Separating short term goals from long term goals is a problem for many fans. They want everything now but also moan if a player or manager isn't given a chance. A fickle bunch football fans.

Daniel Levy is running a big business and has to take a long term view so he devised and has been working to a strategy. He knows where he wants the club to be and how we have to go about getting there, which is within our means. We have to buy young, grow players in value and sell high to sustain ourselves as a top five club. The development squad has to produce players we can sell until that special talent comes along that you hold on to.

But this summer has thrown a spanner in the works almost, it's thrown up an unexpected and unique opportunity. Do you sit by and do nothing or do you see the opportunity and go for it? Do you take a calculated gamble, but with the odds as much in your favour as you are ever going to get them?

Sir Alex Ferguson retired. Manchester United had to appoint a new manager and many believe their success in recent years is as much down to Ferguson as it was the players. We will see. What will happen under a new manager, will he bring a new style, a new system. Both he and the club will have a period of adaption to each other so there is the possibility of Man U being more vulnerable than usual this season. Teams have an opportunity they have not had in the lifetime of some younger supporters.

Chelsea also have a new manager. Abramovich has had to admit he was wrong and turn back to Jose Mourinho, who will be in the same situation AVB was with us last year, taking over an existing squad. He has only had a summer to get the players he wants and certainly his team won't be the finished article yet, just as AVB's wasn't last season. So while he is re-building Chelsea may not be as strong as usual, rivals may also possibly have an opportunity to take unexpected points.

Manchester City again have appointed a new manager and he is in the same boat as Mourinho at Chelsea. Yes he also has quality players at his disposal but again it's not his squad. The top three clubs have all got to get used to new men in charge, the players have got to get used to new men, possibly new styles, new training methods and as we know that does not always work, just ask Chelsea or Liverpool fans.

For the first time there is uncertainty about, the top three could all be vulnerable while new managers rebuild squads, they could all drop points you wouldn't expect this season.

There are basically two teams that could take advantage of that, Tottenham and Arsenal.

Liverpool are probably another year away from challenging again, but they do look to have a good guy at the helm in Brendon Rodgers and are moving in the right direction after a few years of mismanagement.

With a new manager at Everton as well, you'd expect them to have a period of adjustment and not be strong enough, perhaps challenge for 6th again at best but I'd expect Liverpool to have moved past them this season.

Arsene Wenger has money to spend at Arsenal but has been unable to convince anyone of note to move to the Emirates. He has been turned down left, right and centre it would seem, with 17 days left little has happened there.

Tottenham on the other hand, already had a long term manager in place and a squad overhaul had already begun last summer. In effect AVB has a years head start on his rivals. We have raised money to spend from sales in the past but the situation provided an opportunity that we will probably never see again.

Joe Lewis decided to invest and pumped in £50 million initially with more to come. Not reckless spending but prudent spending on quality that should increase in value with Premier League experience at a top club. The business model wasn't thrown out the window it just went up a grade, we stepped up the quality of recruit. Invest now and invest big with a huge asset (Bale) on the books to recoup the investment either now or next season as a safety net. You'd be a fool not to.

This is the chance to steal a march and grab a Champions League place as Financial Fair Play will begin to kick in over the coming seasons. Knock one of them out of the top four and you take away possibly £60 million in prize money, TV and match day revenue from them. They earn over £100 million more than us each season, if we can add £45/50 million from Champions League participation in 2014/15 and take £60/65 million out of a rival, the long term picture could change. If you can basically only spend your income we are starting to get our foot on the ladder, from there we have the chance to climb.

The strategy Levy had would only work if the club structure was right so with a top quality long term manager suddenly becoming available it was old with the old in with the new. Agreement was reached on who should be head hunted and after a year of chasing, Franco Baldini was appointed Technical Director.

Andre Villas-Boas was more than happy to work with one so he could concentrate on the coaching, the area he loves. Franco could deal with scouting and the behind the scenes transfer work the fans rarely see.

The squad overhaul began last summer and with Baldini's arrival has been stepped up this summer. Some big wages have been taken off the pay roll (Bentley, Gallas, probably Parker) to free up wages for recruits.

Two months after Baldini's appointment we have 4 bright shiny new signings.

We have the goalscorer we have been searching for, a rising star from Brazil, the number one central defensive player from the Lique One and a talented young Belgian international. All are on sensible wages. If you took a poll right now on Soldado on his wages or Adebayor on his wages I think I could safely predict 95% would vote for Soldado and a saving on £30K+ a week.

As a statement of intent it shouts load and clear to our rivals and to our fans, watch out Spurs are going for it this season, we are a team to watch.

Out have gone, Gallas, Bentley, Dempsey, Huddlestone, Livermore (on loan), Caulker (because he wanted first team football) and potentially Parker soon. All from the first team squad and their will probably be more as we near the end of the window with something like 47% of all transfers taking place in the last week of the window and 32% on the final day.

But the shopping list is not complete yet, a centre-back, a left-back and another attacking player are all on the wish list to add to the players bought last summer, of which Hugo Lloris, Jan Vertonghen and Mousa Dembele stand out. You could argue the best bit of business was Dawson digging his heels in and saying I'm not going, I'm staying to fight for a place, thank goodness he did, he is the heart of Tottenham.

Failure to qualify has set us back in previous years, there will be no room for excuses this year. This season is an eagerly awaited one football fans but especially Spurs fans.

Man U, Man C, Chelsea, Arsenal Spurs, Liverpool - a window of opportunity Man U, Man C, Chelsea, Arsenal Spurs, Liverpool - a window of opportunity Reviewed by THBlogNews on 10:30 am Rating: 5
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