Football: Spurs set to splash their cash

With a hectic schedule coming up, the return to fitness of Christian Eriksen (left) and Mousa Dembele (right) will be a welcome boost for Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and the supply line for main striker Harry Kane.
With a hectic schedule coming up, the return to fitness of Christian Eriksen (left) and Mousa Dembele (right) will be a welcome boost for Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino and the supply line for main striker Harry Kane.PHOTO: REUTERS

Pochettino says reinforcements can refresh squad; Eriksen fit again

LONDON • Mauricio Pochettino is planning to spend in the January transfer window despite declaring his "happiness" with Tottenham's best start to a Premier League season.

A haul of 18 points from eight games represents a joint-club record dating back to 1992 and while the Argentinian told reporters ahead of today's London derby with West Ham that he had "no regrets" over the club's failure to add to his squad, new additions are in the pipeline.

"It was difficult to achieve the player we needed," he said, in reference to Spurs becoming the first club in English top-flight history not to reinforce in the transfer window this summer.

"That was impossible. I was happy and am happy with the squad that I have, 25 players. We have no regrets, we are happy.

"I need to remind everyone that this is our best start after eight games, it is the best start in the Premier League for Tottenham."

However, the Spurs manager admitted that signings had a two-fold effect: preventing a dressing room from becoming stale while improving the quality of the team.

"Managers always want to improve the squad, sometimes (by) signing players or (by) adding players from the academy," he said.

"Football is dynamic. Every six months, you need to do something to refresh. Or change the dynamic in the dressing room. That is the history in every single club."

Spurs have reportedly made £50 million-rated (S$89.7 million) Lyon midfielder Tanguy Ndombele, who impressed in the French club's 2-1 victory over Manchester City in the Champions League last month, their main target in the January transfer window.

They also have an interest in Lille winger Nicolas Pepe and according to the Evening Standard, Blackburn playmaker Bradley Dack, who has scored nine goals in 11 games in all competitions this term, is another player Spurs are keeping tabs on.

But in the meantime, Pochettino will have to work with the players he has on hand, and the team's injury crisis appears to be easing with midfielders Christian Eriksen and Mousa Dembele both fit again.

Spurs will still be missing Dele Alli, Danny Rose and Jan Vertonghen for their trip to the London Stadium, however.

With a hectic schedule looming in the coming weeks - Spurs have to play four games in nine days in a daunting run that starts against City on Oct 29 - Pochettino knows his squad will be stretched to their limits, but he is confident they can cope.

"It was a good time for us because we are going to recover a few players like Christian and Mousa," he added. "The most important thing is that we start to recover players. It will be a tough month of competition for us.

"We have seven games in one month. There are a lot of games ahead and it's so important to have nearly all the squad fit to compete and play, and to give options to rotate and share the games, to give the level that we want."

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, THE TIMES, LONDON

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 20, 2018, with the headline 'Spurs set to splash their cash'. Print Edition | Subscribe