A guaranteed place in the group stage of the 2016/17 Champions League combined with inflated finances thanks to a bumper TV deal means Tottenham Hotspur’s pulling power has never been greater.
The Lilywhites have so far abstained from flexing their new-found muscles, but a flurry of rumours suggests that’s about to change.
A move for Bayern Munich number ten Mario Gotze is prominent amongst the day’s speculation, while it’s also reported that Georginio Wijnaldum will beg Newcastle United not to price him out of a move to White Hart Lane.
Were Spurs able to lure the duo to north London, they’d join former Southampton anchor Victor Wanyama to complete a radical upholstering of Mauricio Pochettino’s midfield.
Wanyama will provide competition/cover for last season’s first-choice holding player, Eric Dier, who savoured a splendid campaign screening the back four.
Gotze would then presumably rival Dele Alli for a spot behind the solo striker, leaving Wijnaldum to compete with Mousa Dembele as the box-to-box foil in the triumvirate.
Increased squad depth is important ahead of Spurs’ return to the Champions League – they’re evens for a second successive top-four finish next term – but when they’re so light in other areas, Pochettino’s supposed scheme to bulk up his midfield stands out as a strange one.
The protracted pursuit of Vincent Janssen, the long-sought striking alternative to Harry Kane, rumbles on, a world-class wide man wouldn’t go amiss and an additional centre-back was a must before Jan Vertonghen sustained an ankle ligament injury at Euro 2016.
As a unit, Spurs’ midfield was arguably the most cohesive in the Premier League last season and the team’s capitulation in the closing stages came after it had been decimated by suspension.
Each of Dier, Dembele and Alli made at least 27 top-flight starts in the previous campaign and notably improved the more they played together. The maintenance of their high standards as the Lilywhites juggled domestic exploits with a trip to the latter reaches of the Europa League showed a remarkable resistance to the effects of fatigue too.
Based on this evidence, constant rotation enforced by high-profile arrivals is more likely to hinder than enhance their burgeoning midfield trio.