Tottenham have spent millions of pounds in transfers over the last few years. But they were one of of few Premier League clubs not to bring any new faces this January, and that could prove to be a wise decision by the London club.
Signing many new players in just a few weeks is not always a recipe for success. Especially in January, when clubs have little time to do deals, there is a smaller pool of available players and usually in higher prices than in the summer.
There are exceptions to this rule of course. Clubs like Liverpool have signed some of their best current players in January transfer windows, like Luis Suarez and Sturridge. But usually, if you are in a hurry to sign players in the first month of the calendar year, there is a higher probability that you will end up with an Andy Carroll rather than a Sturridge!
Back at Spurs, the White Hart Lane club are still feeling the repercussions of last summer’s transfer activity. By selling Gareth Bale to Real Madrid for $132 million they were suddenly full of cash. But along with it came the pressure to spend, replace their best player and satisfy the fans.
So Tottenham signed a host of players with good – or even great- reputation, but no experience in Premier League football. Nobody can deny that people like Erik Lamela, Christian Eriksen, Vlad Chiriches, Etienne Capoue, Roberto Soldado, Nacer Chadli and Paulinho are good players. Some of them can well prove to be successful in England. It was unwise though to expect all of them to adapt simultaneously to a new league/country in the space of few months. But Spurs relied on them to keep the club in the battle for Champions League places, and it has proven to be very difficult so far.
This January, Tottenham remained quiet in the market and even allowed players to move, like Jermain Defoe and Lewis Holtby. Club chairman Daniel Levy reportedly made funds available to Tim Sherwood for January signings, but the manager probably realized that a transfer merry-go-round every six months is not always the way to go. Now the club have to put their trust in the players that cost them tens of millions not so long ago, and let Tim Sherwood work to turn them to a team capable of reaching the Champions League.