Few would argue that Mauricio Pochettino has inherited a talented but imbalanced pool of players at Spurs, and the north Londoners could be ready to free up a couple of squad spots – and raise much needed funds – by shipping out a pair of valuable assets.
The Lilywhites are available at 14/5 to be playing in the 2015/16 Champions League group stage under Pochettino, but the 11/50 on no such eventuality holds more appeal at this juncture, after Spurs’ shambolic Premier League season saw them slip from fifth to sixth place over twelve months.
Gareth Bale’s transfer fee has been squandered on players that have largely depreciated in value and chairman Daniel Levy’s past form suggests that Tottenham will have to sell if they wish to buy big.
Pochettino would not have taken the job had he not been promised some fresh funds, but Andre Villas-Boas’ first summer in charge saw Spurs’ net spend reach little more than £1m, following the sales of Luka Modric and Rafael van der Vaart.
The former Southampton chief is thought to be readying moves for Valencia’s Ever Banega and Saints’ Dejan Lovren, but with more players than pounds at White Hart Lane these days, Pochettino could supplement his warchest by encouraging proposed offers for midfielders Sandro and Mousa Dembele.
Rafa Benitez’s Napoli have been linked with Spurs’ ‘Beast’ Sandro, who had a very public – yet somehow cordial – falling out with old boss Tim Sherwood last season after being frozen out of the team for long periods.
Napoli are said to have offered £8m for the Brazilian, but Levy wants twice that – according to reports – for the player, who arrived in England from Internacional for around £6m over four years ago.
Roma are also reported to have come to the same £8m figure regarding a move for Dembele, although Spurs are unlikely to take such a hit on the Belgium international – who disappointed in his second season at White Hart Lane – having paid Fulham almost double that for his services two years ago.
However, with both Serie A clubs able to offer the prospect of immediate Champions League football, Spurs may find their bargaining position significantly weakened.