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Entries in hot spurts (4)


More Hot Spurts


This is the best team you’ve ever played for

This is how things have panned out so far this summer. A player is linked. We’re then told by an assortment of sources that he’s about to sign, there’s a deafening silence whilst the same news sources repeat the same story but with different headlines, followed by another silent moment before he does actually sign . We then have to wait an extra few days for his medical meaning it’s still not actually official. Then an additional two days for Spurs to catch up and officially declare it’s done and dusted. Looks like we’re about to dance the same jig, to the tune that saw Sig and Vert skip into N17 gleefully...this time a not so old friend returning on a more permanent basis. Adebayor is set to sign. I think.  £5M / £6M fee and apparently a wage-structure busting pay packet (or perhaps a lump sum signing on fee), who knows? Levy does, whilst the rest of us continue to scratch chins waiting to find out how we’ve managed to pay him 100k + per week. Because even though we don’t know what is going on behind the scenes we’re still going to base our analysis on rumours.

I’ll stop dancing that jig if it turns out we’ve got a bottomless pit and can now afford to pay the tax on behalf of the players we pick out for preferential treatment. For now, I’m hoping the player can return and improve on his performances from last season which were more than decent. He scored a fair few, assisted marvellously and fitted into the style of play – a team player not an individual dependent on everyone else to carry him around. Okay, so he did mis-fire, was unlucky with disallowed goals and did not get half the support in the pen box he should have got. But all these tactical deficiencies we hope to see corrected in the next year. Now he’s on a permanent contract for us, he’ll have to excel. I don’t buy into the lazy dysfunctional version of Adebayor and I’m certain neither has our chairman. There’s no culture of comfort at Spurs these days. That counts for something and should not be undervalued.

Pie in the sky

So Everton are supposedly on the verge of resigning Stephen Pienaar. Told you so. Yeah, that’s right, I’m coming across all smug because the one time I decide to share some info it pans out exactly how I told it. What? What? Come at me bro, I can do ITK. Yeah, what? In fact anyone can. Especially black cab drivers in London who might say pick up a chairman of a football club and end up being told the dramatic story of how a player left a club for the riches on offer, desperate to do so only to then find himself wanting to escape from the hellish reality and return back to his former club. Bill Kenwright painted this exact picture months back, explaining that money rules the brains of footballers and there is simply no competition when it comes to the top four or five clubs signing the best the rest have. The irony with Pienaar, and it’s common knowledge based on just following Spurs last season, is that Harry didn’t want him and didn’t really know what to do with him. A Levy signing, and yet apparently we’re about to make a profit on him if we do sell him back (probably not really when you consider wages spent) but still...only Tottenham can make a mountain out of a mole hill and then build a rabbit hutch in it's place (that isn't meant to make any sense much like this transfer saga).

Midfield Merry-go-round

We’re still waiting to see which club wins the race for Luka. After Villas-Boas revealed its down to which the one that meets our valuation of the player, we can only wait and see if that club is Real Madrid and the fee is £35M - £40M. Because let’s face it, that’s the best possible scenario. Luka goes abroad, we get a massive wedge of cash to go loopy with. The suggestions continue to persist that he’s definitely on the way to La Liga so the questions are:

a)     Do Madrid have the money?

b)     Do they need to lighten their squad first to make room for him?

Yes and probably.

Once it’s done then we sign Joao Moutinho. Easy right?

Armada strikes

We are (according to the press over in Spain) interested and willing to meet the buyout clause for Atlético Madrid’s  Adrián López Álvarez whilst the ITK community persist with the dream of being rocked by Falcao. The latter is brilliant and prolific and possibly out of our league (in the kindest way possible, he will fancy himself as Champions League pedigree and will cost an absolute bomb to the tune of £40M). Adrián is a couple of years younger and will be considerable cheaper (at just under half the price). I think someone has gotten wind of our inclination to spend and are trying to drum up some business and hype for their clients. Those pesky footie agents. When Villas-Boas left Porto he was instantly linked with returning to his former club to steal Falcao away for an alleged £26M (release clause). Then the player was cited at £80M. An obvious reconnection the world of fantasy. I'm assuming he's got a new contract and a new release clause thesedays. So...Strurridge anyone?

Rafa isn’t going to take a bite out of the Hamburg

He’s leaving. He’s not. It’s because of his wife. Wife denies it on Twitter. Back and forth, it won’t go away. But yesterday the player said he is happy at Spurs and doesn’t want to leave. That’s not to say it’s completely his decision but I’m hoping we do keep him. If anything because he loves it against the Woolwich. VB wants to challenge on all fronts? If he’s serious we need depth and we need quality and Rafa is an outstanding player. He might suffer from bouts of inconsistency, fitness issues but the words ‘galvanise’ and ‘talismanic’ were made for him. Belief is such an important commodity and he has it in abundance.  

Fryers is hot property

Apparently he's left Man Utd and left Fergie fuming and is on his way to Spurs. Utd wanted £6M for him (supporters I've spoken to don't rate him at that price) and we'll end up paying considerably less. Hence the fuming. Although the fuming is more likely related to the mini-exodus of Utd yoof that have recently moved on from the club. Fryers is nineteen, plays left back and centre-back. Did I mention Fergie is fuming? Probably worth signing him just for that.

Walking tall

Loved Kyle Walker’s attitude, talking about the changes at Spurs and the ambition to improve as an individual and as a collective. Again I ask, where is the player revolt? Also loving Jan Vertonghen's comments on the 'perfect fit' in relation to Villas-Boas pressure and possession football and being at Tottenham. Nice feeling that, players wanting to play for the shirt.That's something that at times is undervalued by us. May as well enjoy it when we've got it.



Hot Shot Spurts

The Academy Award goes to...

The suggestion is we dropped out of the race to sign Oscar days back, leaving Chelsea with an alleged bid (reported by the English press, not reported by the Brazilian press, denied by Internacional). £25M the valuation. Expect confusion as Joorabchian is involved. Sure, he's (Oscar) 'unknown' in terms of adaptability to the Prem and a far bigger risk than the more well known Joao Moutinho - the more likely candidate to slot into the position of the departing Luka Modric.

With regards to Internacional themselves, more confusion from the stands over our partnership/relationship that was struck a while back. My understanding is we get first dibs on their academy produced players (like Sandro). Although I remember this would entail youth players coming to Spurs and acclimatising to European football before moving on to the continent. Whether this means we sign them and sell them on (profiting both us and Inter) or they are loaned and return back to Brazil is anyone's guess. Bruno Uvini came to us on loan. But he plays for Sao Paulo and not Inter. So unless I'm mistaken, I've yet to see anything play out between the two clubs, aside from the perpetual linkage to Leandro Damiao.

As for Moutinho? Best supporting actor? I'll be happy to see him take the plaudits in a Lilywhite shirt.


Let battle commence

Around 1:30pm - 2pm, Wed, live on Sky Sports News via the new Tottehnam Training centre...Villas-Boas and his first press conference. How many times will the press mention Harry Redknapp by name? I reckon eleven times. Villas-Boas looks sexy, speaks great English (more articulate than our previously soundbite ridden gaffer) but is not half as animated and stand-up comedianesque so expect a subtle backlash in the post-coverage.

Between the sticks

Villas-Boas stating everyone has the chance to impress him, clean slate all round. Great news right? Wrong, well, wrong if you believe the current stories that we are in talks with Hugo Lloris, Lyon and French international sweeper keeper. Somewhere, in a dark corner at The Lodge, Gomes wipes a single solitary tear off his cheek. Would be a cracking signing this. He'd be our number one. Confident, commanding and although Gomes might scream out about shot stopping and reflexes, he cant compare or compete with Lloris cool maturity and decision making. The latter an important ingredient in the high-line tactical planning Villas-Boas is planning on introducing to Spurs. Also, having signed Vertonghen (formally captain of Ajax) we'll be getting another leader in Lloris. This bodes well. Fingers at the ready...and cross them...NOW. Source of this story? This is no watery spurt of Ketchup. It's via L'equipe and negotiations have apparently started. He's twenty-five years of age. He fits the new age bill. Brad to slot into the number two role, Gomes to move on completley.


Defoe to Reading?

That's the rumour. Although I wouldn't expect that to happen unless we've got signings on the way. You get the feeling he's still going to be third inline to the throne at Spurs. Adebayor + another top class signing + potentially a young understudy (or a promoted Harry Kane). Meaning that JD might be better off at a club where he is guaranteed to start every game, up top with a partner and not as the lone man in a three tier attack. As an impact striker, I'd have no complaints in keeping him. He'd have a few. All theortical of course.


Le Luka

Via Le Parisien, PSG are interested in Luka Modric, so much so they've offered 40M Euros. French ITK? The vast majority of people claiming to know something would tell you he's already on his way to the Bernabeu. Although that's not to say such an offer from the mega-rich French wouldn't give Levy a nice little a bargaining tool if no offer from elsewhere has yet to be accepted.

Training Day

Everyone get all giddy when seeing the photos of Villas-Boas and the lads back in training? I'm having to change panties daily. Dean Parrett (youth player) was equally excited, tweeting:

"New gaffers quality knows what he's doing and speaks to everyone.. Everybody has a chance to impress"

I'm sure the first team players feel the same. To have someone astute and mindful and prepared can only make you (the professional footballer) better as an individual and as part of a collective. Completley different, I'd hazard a guess, to Redknapp patrolling the byline and letting Bond and Jordan drill the first team. Am I understating Harry's accountability there? Sure, yes. Much like the tabloid hacks built up this great exodus that was upon us post-Villas Boas appointment.

Photos and video footage of training sessions on official THFC Facebook page.

Jan Vertonghen joins the team tomorrow.


This is the best team, you've ever played for

Another 'worst kept secret' it would seem as everyone is waiting for official word on us making Emmanuel Adebayor a permanent signing giving us two forwards and still requiring a box office third. Adebayor give us a dimension to our play that we've lacked for a while. Not just the tracking back and the decent work ethos but also the ease he settled into the Tottenham way of linking with his team mates as opposed to some of the lesser effective strikers we've had in the past (Darren Bent) that required the team to support them rather than the player support the team. Under Villas-Boas I expect him to be more successful in front of goal, ironic that one of our best performers under-performed at times where it mattered most. Although he had his fair share of disallowed efforts and our general lack of discipline and fluidity from the flanks and support in the penalty area made for a frustrating lack of cutting edge. With Bale and Lennon on the wings and someone of Adebayor's calibre up front, we should have got more for our possession last season. I'll wager we will this time round.


What does it mean?

Continuing on from Adebayor - if he has signed then we're talking about the player agreeing to become our highest paid player. Possibly 100k? More? If so, does this nod approvingly to the direction Levy wants to take us in terms of now paying for players when its imperative to do so in order to capture their signature or is this a clue towards the rumour of a cash injection? Allowing us to be more ambitious in the transfer market and with our wage structure? 

The hype continues to build.


Cycling 5000 miles across the USA for Cancer Research UK

Max Ricky Mills, Tottenham fan, is currently cycling 5000 miles across the United States. Since starting his journey he has been astonished by the generosity and kindness of those he has met so in turn has decided to try and link his trip to fundraise for Cancer Research UK. You can take a look at some of the photographs he has taken on his blog: and click here if you wish to donate.






Gylfi Sigurdsson was finally unveiled a Spurs player yesterday. Attacking midfielder, further up the pitch than those with deeper qualities - so he's not a replacement for Luka Modric. But perhaps one that might play the role van der Vaart does. The latter continues to be linked to a move back to Germany whilst the former will hopefully link up in attack with precision passing and pin-point thunderous shots. Useful with set pieces which given our recent history is a Gods send. Let's hope he doesn't lose his abilities from dead ball positions once he dons the Spurs shirt.


Steven Caulker has signed a new four year contract. High hopes. Brilliant season for Swansea and hopefully will be part of our campaign this one along with what is shaping up to be strong centre-back depth alongside Kaboul, Dawson and Jan Vertonghen (any day now). Still no news on Ledley King's decision on whether to retire and if he plans to accept one of the clubs offers to retain him at the club (perhaps as a coach).


Pienaar back to Everton. No shocker. Well documented he wanted to join Spurs then soon admitted a mistake and wanted to leave. A signing the chairman made the manager didn't want. I'll add in 'allegedly' to give it that whimsical touch of confusion. Because you wouldn't believe it was Bill Kenwright that confirmed all of the above. Ooh ITK. Where's my badge of honour?


Talking of Vertonghen, he's training with his current club Ajax although sources in Holland suggest by Monday he'll be training with us. The player appears to be philosophically ambiguous, suggesting he's prepared to move but is happy at Ajax but would be disappointed if he didn't join Spurs. The contract wrangling over money owed to him by Ajax remains the glitch in completing the move. Medical, contract and fee all agreed and done.


Oscar? Tim Vickery (South American football expert) had this to say on a much maligned radio station. Rare credibility for them.

Seems a mature young man. Happy to take responsibility. Always a gamble bringing him over. Question over whether Inter want to sell. Given the choice I think they would rather sell Leandro Damiao.... They have a hefty wage bill and might need to sell. Would be surprised if they have done a deal already (before the olympics)

This particular link has been doing the rounds since last season when Oscar was connected with Tottenham (along with Leandro, no not that one, another youthful Brazilian striker). It's all been made more tangible by the fact that Inter already have a relationship with us (Sandro) and our persistence on Damiao (which has cooled). Villas-Boas was recently in Brazil. Daniel Levy was recently in the USA (could have comfortably taken a connecting flight?). Let's do the maths and dance a jig. This one might actually happen.


dos Santos on ESPN radio:

"I want to return to Spain, there is a new coach at Tottenham, a new season is starting and it is clear to me that I want to return to Spanish football."

All dependent if Levy is still looking to earn back more on the player than he spent on him. Is £4M a fair valuation? Taking wages paid to player into consideration, it's probably why he gets priced out of a move every summer. Levy probably wants £6M. Villas-Boas might fancy him. Wouldn't be the first time a player has returned from the brink of oblivion and made a success of it. Although in his case it will be from the brink of the bar. If legend is true. If it isn't, if the lad does commit in training then we'll see it for ourselves - either at Spurs or in La Liga. Mexico aside he has flattered to deceive. If it's because nobody has believed in him since signing for us, we'll have to wait to be proved wrong - then again, judging by the above quote, we won't see the outcome in Lilywhite.

Talk of a media embargo on a certain sports radio station (yep, the much maligned one) and one of its presenters bragging about 'massive Spurs' news before doing a complete u-turn to suggest he was only referring to the appointment of Villas-Boas. The suggestion is it involves knowledge about this alleged investment/financial injection/naming rights rumour that has spent the best part of the last month waiting to be announced (according to people who claim to know its going to be announced). It gets more colourful when people start to connect the dots, claiming it's why Bale signed a new long term contract and why other players want to sign (as opposed to all that just being business as usual in-house developments). Until Tottenham reveal all, it's all guess work.


Caulker and Villas-Boas photographed at The Lodge in Under Armour shirts. Cockerel on opposite side of where it would usually grace the chest. Innovation.


Player exodus:

Ben Alnwick - to Barnsley

Oscar Jansson - released

Jesse Waller Lassen - released

Kudos Oyenuga / Mirko Ranieri - contracts expired but no more info

A collective 'meh' is shrugged.


Goal line technology set to be introduced this season. It's all coming together people. No longer shall we be cheated. FA could be introducing it during December (won't be ready before then) so controversy still has a few games left to break hearts.


Newcastle away. Live on ESPN. The revolution will be televised. Haters gonna hate.


Latest from the ITK grapevine: Hugo Lloris is linked. Too early to scratch our heads over this one. Easy to forget we still have Gomes at the club. Adebayor might sign permanently, always a 50/50 chance of that happening based on his loan spell with us. Now that Sahin has ruled himself out of moving away from Real Madrid, Gonzalo Higuain is being linked as part of a deal involving Luka Modric. Higuain? Far fetched. Out of our reach. Didn't we go through this already with the Benzema fantasy? It's got to be fantasy, right? Yes? No?

Time for a cold shower.




Hot Spurts

Quick run-down of today's 'news'.


1st of July. Not so Super Sunday. The main Tottenham related highlight was Under Armour releasing the launch date of the new Spurs shirt. So basically the big news was an announcement being announced. The 2012-2013 kits will be unveiled on Thursday 12th and available to order to purchase from Spurs shops the next day. Yep, that's right, on Friday 13th. You just can't make this ilk of PR up.

The new era is still waiting to make its grand entrance. Pick any day this up and coming week and you might strike lucky. We all know it's going to happen, we all know what's going to happen so there's very little to say until after it's happened. But to reiterate, I'm positively beaming with encouragement and excitement.

Khumalo is set for PAOK in Greece. A season long loan. It's signings like this that make me question some of Levy's ethics in the transfer market. What was the point of him joining Spurs in the first place only to be sent out to the Championship? When Harry spoke about the lad was he just doing so to raise the profile of the player and if so why? Just so Reading can sign him? This smells of raising another type of profile in South Africa. That's football. Anyone know where Toda is these days? Then again, you could argue what was the point in signing the likes of dos Santos and Bentley. That's also football. Mistakes happen regularly.

The Times were the first to break the story linking us to Brazilian starlet Oscar who plays for our buddy club Internacional. I don't know much about him (do any of us unless you follow South American football?) but do remember similar stories about our interests in him from last year. Mainly because I signed him in Football Manager soon after reading about it. Tasty attacking midfield pixels that might translate well in the real world. Although if this is something that pans out to be true, along with Sigurdsson and our current central mids, we have a plethora of talent to visually taste cometh the new season. AVB was in Brazil scouting recently, so this one might be a possibility. Leandro Damiao (for now) does not look like one based on recent speculation and price tags.

Cracking teasing, flirting quote from Moutinho (FC Porto) saying, "I'd work with him again tomorrow" - re: AVB. Obviously meant as compliment of how highly regarded a coach Villas-Boas is. But pretty much more meat to sink our teeth in to what will be a feast of targets that will be cited post-press conference (tune in on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, maybe Thursday or Friday). We'll be looking for a Luka replacement. Oscar or Moutinho?

From one question to another. Theo Walcott to Spurs? Yeah sure, why not. For £4M he'll do well to come off the bench for the final 15 minutes of games. Give Lennon a rest.

Redknapp was in the press a couple of days back talking to Sky Sports wasn't he? Who cares.

Ledley King retirement imminent? We know something will soon be announced as we've already been told King is considering his options. The man is so much part of the club that there is little chance of him being potentially discarded when the new manager arrives, in terms of a coaching position. Unless King is looking for a more ambassadorial role at Spurs. Ledley retiring is possibly for the best, for his own health and future. A brilliant and majestic footballer, a legend. Whatever his decision he'll remain Tottenham forever and if he wants to be involved the club have a duty to make sure he is.

Investment on the cards? According to Graham Roberts on the radio. According to the ITK news from the past few weeks. Although this seems to be mostly guess work (i.e. I know someone who knows something), from directors supposedly told to remain in the country and not go on holiday to rumours about funds being made available to aid in breaking the wage structure or perhaps naming rights for the new stadium. Surely any investment would go towards the latter?

Bale out of the GB team. Meh. Pre-season is upon us. Don't care for much else other than my club. The whole Stratford affair has burnt me out and I have little interest in the Olympics.

Thoughts on that Daily Express article here.

In other news: Euro Final. In summary, Spain play possession football to ease into the final, get called boring, up their game by a notch, destroy Italy.