Spurs are on their way to Wembley! Well, if they can negotiate a deal to play at the national football stadium while their new ground is being built, then yes, they are. Before that they will play at least one more round in this season’s FA Cup, having seen off Leicester City in a replay earned via an iffy penalty when the team first met. The tabloids all lead with Spurs’ 0-2 win at Leicester.
The Sun – “It was the Son wot won it” – hails Tottenham’s Heung-Min Son. His goal hit the net at 54mph. Good to know. No less interesting is the paper’s dire and ubiquitous “5 Things we learnt” column, in which a football writer is tasked with the dread job of making a list to fill a space. The first point is: “Tottenham’s reserve team was far better than Leicester’s reserve team.” Not so. Of the 14 Spurs player who took part in the match, 8 played against Leicester last weekend. Leicester called on 6 from 14. Neither side was at full-strength, but to call them reserve sides is wrong.
And what football writer worth their corn had to watch the match to “learn” that bigger, richer Spurs have more strength in depth than smaller, poorer Leicester?
When Spurs went 1-0 up, fist-choice striker Harry Kane came on. Only with Leicester 2-0 down did Claudio Ranieri, Leicester’s manager, send on top-scorer Jamie Vardy. Two Leicester City players – Demarai Gray and Ben Chilwell – were making their home debuts. Son’s fine goal was in part down to Chilwell’s failure to close him down. It’s pretty clear that Spurs manger, Mauricio Pochettino wanted it more.
Spurs march on. Leicester continue to be the season’s surprise package.
When Tottenham offered Dele Alli an improved contract, the player was happy to sign on for a further five and a half years. On Tuesday Alli agreed the deal. His pay doubled to £25,000 a week. With the ink still wet, Spurs coach Mauricio Pochettino compared Alli to Paul Pogba, the star Juventus and France player.
Pogba earns far in excess of Alli’s weekly wage. Should Alli continue his rate of improvement chances are bigger club will offer him a lot of money to play for them. At his age, Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere was earning closer to £50,000-a-week. The big wages help to make Arsenal look ambitious.
Today the Times says Spurs are aware that £25,000-a-week is getting “England’s Pogba” on the cheap. So in the summer Alli will be offered a new deal. Spurs, we read, “are aware that Alli remains relatively underpaid… but are also conscious of his age and the advisability of rewarding him gradually.”
Sure they are. Alli is being underpaid.
And so too is his Spurs teammate Harry Kane. And Pochettino is happy to talk up his striker.
“I was a player. When you have up front Ronaldo, Romario, your challenge is to fight with them and you need be ready 200 percent, not 100 percent. It’s like when Harry Kane starts, for example,” Pochettino said. “Now Harry Kane is a top-class player and it’s always a challenge for the centre-backs to try to stop him. It’s a big challenge. It’s changed how they see us.”
Kane earns £70,000-a-week.
Unless Spurs pay the going rate for regular Barclays Premier League starters and England internationals, their best players will continue to leave the club. Maybe that’s the plan. Alli has no buy-out clause in his contract. The Times says Tottenham will reply on the negotiation sills of club chairman Daniel Levy should they receive any offers.
They will do. And Levy will sell.
The Times says Stoke City are aiming to beat Spurs to West Bromwich Albion’s wantaway striker Saido Berahino.
West Brom have agreed to let Berahino leave the club. They hope to raise funds to sign a winger.
Tottenham’ manager, Mauricio Pochettino, says he is keen to hire a new striker – but on if the player is of the right characters. Does that count Berahino out? He threw a hissy fit when West Brom blocked his move to Spurs over the summer. Do spurs need the aggravation?
Can Tottenham hang on to Dele Alli, the 19-year-old midfielder signed from MK Dons for £6m? Alli has signed a new deal to keep him at Spurs for the next five seasons. His pay rises from £12, 500 to £25,000 a week, says the Sun.
So good is Alli that the Sun, which leads with news of his new contract deal, hails him as “the English Paul Pogba”. That’s Paul Pogba, 22, the languid, purposeful, imaginative, gifted Frenchman who ended last season playing for Italian double-winners Juventus in the Champions’ League final.
Pogba finished 15th in the Ballon d’Or list. On Monday, he was named in the FIFPro World XI for 2015. At the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, he was named best young player of the tournament. Gifs and Vines of Pogba’s skills are all over the web.
Pogba makes and scores goals. He bosses games.
If Alli is the English equivalent of the shining Pogba why is he on the kind of wages that surely make every team bigger than Spurs confident of securing his signature? Gazzetta dello Sport says Pogba earns €4.5m (£3.3m) a season.
The Mail says PSG are watching Alli. The player, we learn, “is keen to play abroad in the future”.
So why don’t Spurs put him on higher wages?
In December 2012, Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere, then 20, signed a new contract. The Mail said his wage was £80,000-a-week.
If Spurs think Alli can be one of the best, why don’t they pay him a wage that will stop him looking elsewhere?
The Sun says West Bromwich Albion’s occasional striker Saido Berahino wants to join Tottenham this January. The paper says Berahino is ready to reject other all offers in favour of Spurs.
Reportedly, Stoke and Newcastle are also after the 22-year-old but he’ll only joins Spurs – “he is ready to snub any other offers to make sure he becomes a Spurs player.” His “heart is set on White Hart Lane”.
Well, given the option of Spurs, Stoke or Newcastle, who would you chose to play for? Which city would you want to live in?
The Independent has a new option. It says Berahino has been earmarked to replace Daniel Sturridge at Liverpool. The Mirror agrees.
As for Berahino, the player who arrived in the UK as a 10-year-old fleeing for his life from the Burundian civil war, well, he’s managed to look every bit as doltish as the next hungry ‘I am’. He wanted to leave West Brom in the summer, handing in a transfer request that the club refused to agree to.
In December 2015, we read:
The Times has learnt that the 22-year-old became increasingly isolated after he angered the club in late autumn. Berahino is understood to have upset his fellow players with his reaction to being substituted at half-time in the 2-0 defeat away to Crystal Palace in October, when he listened to music through his headphones after learning of the decision to replace him.
He also upset the West Brom hierarchy by returning a day late from an agreed trip to Dubai.
One question: why do Spurs want him? He’s a good player. He’s ambitious But he also comes across as trouble. Why disrupt a tight dressing room?
Transfer balls: a look at terrible football reporting. The Daily Telegraph has news for Arsenal and Spurs fans:
In case you thought the bitter north London rivalry needed anything else to ramp it up, it has been reported that both Arsenal and Tottenham are after the same man – and the team in white are going to win.
They are? Who is this player? And who picks Spurs over the Gunners?
Arsenal have long shown an interest in Ezequeil Lavezzi, reportedly failing to agree a fee for the Paris Saint-Germain winger last summer.
The piece ends:
The former Napoli man is out of contract in the summer and Spurs will be able to seal the deal for a knock-down price.
Number of sources linked to: nil.
Number of people quoted: nil.
But we can quote a source who seems to know all about Lavezzi.
Chelsea ready to pursue deal for PSG’s Ezequiel Lavezzi – May 2014
Arsenal transfer news and rumours: Gunners suffer blow in bid to sign PSG’s Ezequiel Lavezzi -PSG winger Ezequiel Lavezzi is unlikely join either Arsenal in January, according to his agent. – Dec 31, 2015
You can read those stories in the Daily Telegraph.
In other Lavezzi news:
And Gazzetta dello Sport says that Tottenham are not fighting Arsenal for the player – it’s Barcelona and Internazionale they need to beat. Best of luck with that.
The Sun leads with news that Spurs will invest £25m in tying Dele Alli and Harry Kane to long term deals. The money won’t come in one hit. As the paper says:
Striker Kane, currently on £45,000 a week, is likely to be offered a deal worth £70,000 a week. Alli would double his pay from £12,500 to £25,000 a week.
Good money. Great money for young men doing what they love. But compared to the £300,00o-a-week Wayne Rooney earns at Manchester Untied or the £200,000-a-week Raheem Sterling earns over the same period at Manchester City, not much.
Spurs fans eager for their club to hang onto two bright prospects will not be comforted by the numbers. Any idea that Kane will stay put out of loyalty (the Spurs fans hopeful chant that Harry is “one of our own” is sweet and desperate) is undermined by pictures of the young Harry wearing an Arsenal kit.
As for Alli, he spoke with David Hytner in October:
In his first newspaper interview as a Tottenham Hotspur player, Dele Alli said “unreal” and “surreal” on a number of occasions. Then again, he was speaking after making his first start for the club, in the showpiece friendly against Real Madrid at Bayern Munich’s Allianz Arena, in front of 70,000 fans and, 24 minutes in, he had nutmegged Luka Modric.
Alli said that he and Real’s superstar midfielder had “had a laugh about it in the tunnel afterwards”.
That’s Modric, who used to play for Spurs before a bigger club beckoned him over. He plays with Gareth Bale, who made the same move from White Hart Lane to Madrid. Alli joined Mauricio Pochettino’s Tottenham squad in February 2014 for £5m.
“It is the same situation as with Harry Kane last season. Be careful with the young players that arrive in the Premier League. It is not easy. You can see that Dele is very mature and a player who shows great quality. He has a great personality and good character. But it is too much of a rush to talk about bigger steps for him. Always in football, you need to take it step-by-step, game-by-game.”
Until a big club with vast sums of money comes calling.
Spurs midfielder Dele Alli played a blinder on his England debt. He tackled, scored a belter and moved well. At just 19, Spurs have a rising star in their ranks.
Ali is good enough for England. He’s good enough for Tottenham. But the Daily Express wonders: is she could enough for Chelsea or Manchester United? Bruce Archer asks the question no-one else is:
Spurs sit above dull, money-mad Chelsea in the Premier League table. They are just behind dull, money-mad Manchester United.
Arsenal drew 1-1 with Spurs in the Premier League yesterday. The Mirror leads with “GET A ROOM BOYS”, a comment based on a picture of Tottenham’s Vertonghen with his hand close to Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud’s crotch.
The Mirror says this is “just like” when Vinnie Jones grabbed hold of Paul Gascoigne’s balls. But it isn’t. Vertonghen never takes hold of Giroud’s tackle nor appraises his target by calling him “fat boy”.
But sticking with the foreplay theme, the Sun thunders: “Gunners will never win title with fluff-it Oli up front”.
From fluffed to fluffer, Giroud is the subject of Steven Howard’s opinion that Arsenal will “win nothing with Olivier Giroud as the main striker”. All true – if you don’t notice that Arsenal won back-to-back FA cups with Giroud as the, er, main striker. And all true if you fail to spot that with Danny Welbeck and Theo Walcott injured, Giroud is Arsenal’s only fit striker with a goal scoring record. Yes, there’s Joel Campbell but he’s a makeweight, filling in on the right-wing as seven more accomplished first-team Arsenal players keep the medics busy.
The chief problem with Giroud is that he’s not English. Whereas the Frenchman is rubbished (goals this season in the PL: 6), Harry Kane of Spurs is “immaculate” (goals this season in the PL: 6). Kane scored one. He also missed a chance that would have put Spurs two up. He’s a very good player. But he’s not perfect.
One page back and the Sun’s Charlie Wyett also heaps praise on Kane. We learn that Kane” bullied Arsenal’s defence”. He didn’t. If any Spurs player did, it was Erik Lamela (not English), whose “terrier-like harrying” (Times) and all-round play is a massive upturn in performance from the player who joined Spurs for £25m in the post Gareth Bale shopping spree.
The Mirror’s Dave Kidd hails the best player on the pitch: Arsenal’s Mesut Ozil, who has for the first time in PL history provided assists in six straight games. The German is also the Sun’s man of the match.
In the Express, Matthew Dunn mentions Giroud’s “nightmare”.
The Mail’s Martin Samuel says “Arsenal got away with it”. And they can thank Mesut Ozil, also named as the Mail’s man of the match. In a hyped Premier League, Ozil is one of the few players with genuine quality.
Arsenal fans don’t much like Mike Dean, the Premier League referee. Claims, however nuts, that the man in yellow doesn’t like the Gunners will not be undone buy the video of him reacting to a Spurs goal against Aston Villa.
What is he doing? And why is he doing it in public?
Transfer Balls: Manchester Untied will offer Spurs £50m for their striker Harry Kane, says the Daily Star. The paper says United manager Louis Van Gaal is “demanding the Old Trafford top brass” sign the 22-year-old England striker.
The paper says United launched a failed £25m bid for Kane over the summer.
Will Kane and Spurs take the money?
Who know? After all, this is the Daily Star, which told Google News that Kane already plays at Old Trafford:
Such are the facts…
Transfer Balls: a look at football reporting in the news. The Mail and Mirror say Spurs are chasing Moses Daddy-Ajala Simon. Compare and contrast the newspapers’ reports.
Tottenham are following Gent winger Moses Simon. Club scouts have been following Gent’s centre forward Laurent Depoitre, who started and scored for Belgium against Andorra. A Nigeria international, Simon scored seven goals last season as Gent finished second in the Belgian Pro League and set up Depoitre for the winning goal in the Belgian Super Cup.
Tottenham and Liverpool wanted to sign Simon when he was a teenager but he opted to train with Ajax instead. Now they are back on his trail after a string of impressive performances. Depoitre scored Belgium’s fourth goal on Saturday night as they sealed their place at next summer’s European Championships with a 4-1 victory over Andorra
Tottenham are tracking Gent winger Moses Simon. Spurs are already monitoring the progress of the club’s Belgium forward Laurent Depoitre, who started and scored against Andorra on Saturday. And now they are watching Simon, 20, a Nigeria wideman who scored seven times last season to help Gent win the Belgian Pro League.
‘The North Londoners have been keen on Simon since he was a teenager, but he chose to train with Dutch club Ajax instead. Depoitre, 26, hit the fourth goal in the 4-1 win for Belgium over Andorra that sealed their place at the Euro 2016 Finals’ – Darren Lewis, Mirror Football.
This is last season’s Belgian league table:
Gent won. But the two papers appear to agree pretty much for for word on everything else.
Can Tottenham and Chelsea share Wembley Stadium while their respective stadiums are being renovated?
The Daily Mail says “desperate Spurs are losing ground in battle with Premier League rivals Chelsea in bid to relocate to Wembley”.
“Spurs’ spoiling tactics have included making clear they would be happy to share with their London rivals.”
Spurs’ spoiling tactics have included making clear they would be happy to share with their London rivals, despite the regular Wembley calendar making that a non-starter.
That’s odd because on September 10, the Mail said:
Chelsea and Tottenham could share Wembley while they build new stadiums…
Football Association chief executive Martin Glenn has backed plans for both to use Wembley, even though that could mean the two doing so at the same time…
And while it is possible both clubs could play at Wembley without overlapping, the FA boss said he was happy to entertain the idea of them sharing the ground to boost profitability.
So much for sharing the ground being a “non-starter”.
In the Daily Express, a “Man City legend urges Harry Kane to leave ‘mediocre Spurs’ for Man Utd”?
Who is this quotable legend? It’s Rodney Marsh, who tells talkSport:
“He needs to go on and become the player he can be. He isn’t going to become that at Spurs because Spurs have now become that mediocre, second-tier team in the Premier League.”
There goes Rodney, making a comment to get himself on the news cycle. And it worked. Just as it worked when he opined:
“I had a phone call from a mate of mine, and he’s been right on many things, and he said that he believes Real Madrid have accepted a bid somewhere in the region of £48million for Benzema from Arsenal. In the past this guy has always been right, he’s never been wrong yet…”
Chelsea and Tottenham can share Wembley Stadium while their grounds are redeveloped. FA’s chief executive, Martin Glenn says:
“We are there to provide help. We can run the FA for less costs and we can raise more. There’s a range of things. It’s primarily a football stadium, football matches are more profitable to run than concerts and other things.
“We are the national stadium and seeking to use it more is what we are all about. We have an obligation to football. I’m not talking specific clubs but it’s in our interest as an association for clubs to redevelop their grounds, make superb facilities and if it’s possible to help them in that transition by using Wembley, we are absolutely supportive of that.”
The Standard says Chelsea would prefer to stay at the Bridge when the builders move in. Tottenham have looked at relocating to Milton Keynes’ Stadium:mk for the 2017/18 season.
And can two sides share Wembley, a busy the stadium that hosts the RL Challenge Cup final and a series of NFL games, domestic cup and play-off finals and and a rugby union fixture?
The FA’s decision is surely all about the money. The Mail says Chelsea have offered £11m a year to use Wembley for three years while Stamford Bridge is rebuilt from 2017. Spurs have bid £8m a season. Given the vast sums of cash in the Premier League, both bids sound low.
On Tottenham striker Emmanuel Adebayor, Togo head coach Tom Saintfiet had this to say:
“If you are dating a woman who does not want to respond positively, then you must look for another woman”
A striker is like a fine wine…
Arsenal wants to sign FC Basel’s Breel Embolo, says the Daily Express. The Cameroon-born 18-year-old has scored 11 goals in 36 appearances for the Swiss outfit.
The paper says Wenger will bid £10million for the Swiss international in January.
It was only in July Steve Bates told his Sunday People readers that Embolo was headed to either West Ham or Tottenham. He didn’t.
The Times’s Gary Jacob says Basel want £20m for the player. Wenger will have to dig deeper.
Is Embolo any good? This report suggests he is:
Debuting in the 2013/14 Europa League against FC Salzburg aged 17, Embolo also made his league debut three days later, scoring his first professional goal only four minutes after coming off the bench.
Best not show that goal to desperate Manchester United. If they see it young Breel will be worth £30m plus…
Transfer News: Everton fans drive John Stones out, Chelsea want Linpeng, Arsenal meet Higuain asking price
It was obvious, really. The way to keep John Stones from leaving Everton is for the club’s fans to make him “flee” his Widnes home and hide out in a hotel. Well, so says the Sun– and who in Liverpool can doubt the veracity of that paper’s reporting on the Merseyside teams?
No news on how fans of Wolfsburg have taken the news that Kevin de Bruyne will head to Manchester City for a weekly retainer of £200,000, says the Telegraph , or £300,000 a week if you believe the Daily Mirror.
Liverpool’s Serbian winger Lazar Markovic, 21, a £20m signing from Benfica just last summer, has left Anfield to join Fenerbahce on a season-long loan in the tax-free Turkish leagues, says the Daily Mail.
Another on his way to Turkey – maybe – is Chelsea and Nigeria midfielder John Mikel Obi, 28. Besiktas are keen on the uninspiring midfielder, says the Daily Mirror.
The Guardian says Norwich have offered £1.5m for Stoke City’s never-say-die Jonathan Walters. Stoke says that offer is laughably low.
The Times relays news from Chinese media that Chelsea are after Zhang Linpeng, who plays for (it says here) Guangzhou Evergrande.
Also in the Times news that West Ham United still want Tottenham’s Emmanuel Adebayor. The 31-year-old former Arsenal and Manchester City striker turned down the chance to reunite with Tim Sherwood at Aston Villa because he wanted to stay in London. Adebayor is in the last year is a contract worth £100,000-a-week. West Ham think he’s worth it.
According to the Daily Express, Arsenal will offer £59m for Napoli’s Gonzalo Higuain. The Italian will reject that vast sum and only sell in January for reasons that are as clear as mud.
Tottenham’s move for West Bromwich Albion striker Saido Berahino will come to nothing. Albion chariman Jeremy Peace is unimpressed with Spurs’ recent bid of £22 million (made in “stage payments and add-ons”). He wants £25m in a single hit.
“As I have made clear from the moment Tottenham lodged their first bid for Saido on August 18, selling our top goalscorer was never on our agenda this summer. Not only have the offers been too low as a valuation of the player, but they have been based on stage payments and add-ons over a long period, which do nothing to reflect Saido’s ability and potential.
“I have the greatest respect for Daniel Levy but he must surely appreciate we would have needed to replace Saido had he left and no consideration of that position has been reflected by Tottenham’s strategy.”
Will he keep his word? It looks like it. Peace has told Berahino that’s he’s staying.
But Harry Redknapp (who he?), says it’s all bluff – and he should know.
“It’s only a game of poker at the moment between (Tottenham chairman) Daniel Levy and Jeremy Peace,” Redknapp said. “Jeremy Peace holds all the aces in that situation because Tottenham are desperate for a striker – he’s the one they’ve identified, so I think the deal will happen before the deadline. Everything’s probably all done with the player behind the scenes. He probably has a good idea about where he’s going to live, even.”
As for the player, well, he’s “cut his ties with West Brom – on social media”, says Sky Sports. Saido has unfollowed West Brom on twitter – which might be most pathetic thing we’ve hear all year.
As Spurs fans rush to find out who Njie is (he scored seven goals in 30 appearances for Lyon last season), someone leaks a story that he’s so good that Arsenal tried to scupper his move to White Hart Lane.
The Metro says “Arsenal made attempt to hijack Tottenham’s Clinton Njie transfer”.
The paper’s scoop is rooted in a single report in L’Equipe, which says Arsenal asked about Njie. they amde no offer. They did not meet his representatives. As highjacks go, it was like trying to seize control of the plane by browing in the Duty Free shop.
Transfer Balls: Manchester City will get Kevin de Bryune for £45m, West Brom go for Salomon Rondon and stunning Chelsea news
Is Kevin de Bryune heading to Manchester City from Wolfsburg? Yes, says the Guardian, so long as City cough up £45m for the 24-year-old former Chelsea player. But even if they do, Wolfsburg managing director Klaus Allofs says Man City will have to persuade De Bruyne to ask for a transfer, reports the Daily Express.
The Birmingham Mail says West Brom are to invest £15m in Venezuela striker Salomon Rondon, 25. The player, currently knocking them in for Zenit St Petersburg, would become Albion’s most expensive player.
The Daily Star reports that Everton want to take 23-year-old Inter Milan midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri on loan.
The Sun says nippy Aaron Lennon, 28, is on the verge of leaving Spurs. They’ve not even given him a squad number. Aston Villa are said to be interested.
The mighty Bournemouth have seen their £3m offer for Crystal Palace’s Glenn Murray, 31, rejected by Palace. The Guardian says the Cherries will now up that offer.
The Daily Telegraph states the bleedin’ obvious by reporting that Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho thinks you can only sign players from Barcelona, Bayern Munich or Real Madrid if a) the club wants to sell them or b) the player wants to leave. No sh*t Sherlock.
Spurs have sold Younes Kaboul to Sunderland for £3m. The players is chuffed to bits:
“I’m delighted to be a Sunderland player and it’s an honour to join this club.”
Or as his agent put it in July 2008:
“Younes would not join Sunderland – even if there was an earthquake. We’ve much more interesting options. No disrespect”
Ddi the earth move for you?
Spurs have unveiled plans for a big new ground. The ground will also stage two American football matches a season for ten years. To some, the stadium’s design resembles a giant bed pan. One single tier home stand will have enough seating for 17,000 fans. It will be a “wall of sound”, says the club. But if Spurs fail to win, that sound will be the rattle of seats popping up. After all, as Spurs fan know, if you can’t win the match at least win the journey home.
At full capcity the ground will hold more fans than Araenal’s Emirates and Chelsea’s reworked Stamford Bridge.
Spurs will be the biggest team in London. Well, in terms of ground size, they will.
The Daily Telegraph says the new ground gives Spurs bragging rights over their London rivals:
Arsenal’s ground has a max capacity of 60,432, which means at 61,000, the new Spurs ground will be exactly 0.9398993910510988% bigger. Now this might not sound like a lot, but football is a game of small margins. Matches can be won and lost by fractions of a centimetre – those extra seats will make a difference.
If bigger grounds mean bigger success, can Tom explain why Newcastle United win less cups than Chelsea?
Transfer balls: Spurs have signed Toby Alderweireld from Atlético Madrid.
On June 5, the Telegraph said Chelsea and Spurs wanted Alderweireld. The clubs are “forced” to pay £14m for the player:
June 7 and Spurs don’t pay £14m for the player:
Of course, the Belgian signed for Arsenal in 2014:
Arsenal never bid for the player.
Such are the facts.