When Gareth Bale left Tottenham to join Real Madrid last summer, former boss Andre Villas-Boas was given a huge amount of money to spend on new players. It was hoped that the Welshman would not be missed because of the new star arrivals, but that has not been the case.
The players bought in have, on the whole, disappointed hugely this season, but have any of them been a success? OnFootball looks at the seven players acquired by AVB, and how they have done in a Spurs shirt to date.
PAULINHO (£17m from Corinthians)
The midfielder has been one of Tottenham’s more successful signings, bringing a dynamism to the midfield that was, perhaps, lacking before. Six goals from his role is solid but far from spectacular, although a number of them have been important strikes.
Considering Paulinho will start for Brazil in the summer, however, it’s fair to say that you would still probably expect more from him. He’s been far from a disaster, but he’s also not set the world alight like some predicted.
NACER CHADLI (£7m from Twente)
When Chadli signed it seemed a fairly pointless purchase by Spurs, considering the number of wide players they already had at their disposal. The Belgium international has been very disappointing, offering limited quality in almost every game he has played.
He is good physically for a winger, but appears to be a one-trick pony who can only cut inside onto his right foot. He lacks pace, goals and work-rate, and generally looks a very poor signing by the north London club.
ROBERTO SOLDADO (£26m from Valencia)
The Spaniard has been arguably Spurs’ poorest signing since joining from Valencia, particularly given the vast fee they paid for his services last summer. He was seen as a world-class striker who was one of Europe’s most lethal finishers, but he’s looked anything but that.
The 28-year-old has only scored scored five goals in 22 Premier League appearances, and most of them have been penalties. He’s looked out of his depth in a league known for its physical nature, and he continues to miss golden chances in big games.
He may come good, but at the moment he is as big a disappointment as Fernando Torres has been at Chelsea.
ETIENNE CAPOUE (£9m from Toulouse)
Capoue looked fairly impressive in his first few games for the club, but it’s fair to say injuries have hampered the Frenchman’s season quite a lot.
Many felt the 25-year-old could feature in France’s side at the World Cup, but those injury problems, coupled with some ineffective displays, have seen him drop down the pecking order for both club and country.
He has an elegance and presence about him in defensive midfield, but he hasn’t really stamped his authority enough to be considered a success at White Hart Lane.
VLAD CHIRICHES (£8.5m from Steaua Bucharest)
The Romania captain is the one player that you would definitely say has been a success at Spurs. Until picking up a recent back injury, which will rule him out for some time, he was arguably the side’s Player of the Year.
Although only 24, Chriches has played with authority, consistency and quality at the back, winning countless duels against many top strikers. With Michael Dawson creaking and Jan Vertonghen in and out of the side through injury, he’s been crucial to his side’s decent defensive record this season.
He is a huge miss while he remains on the sidelines, and looks an excellent signing.
CHRISTIAN ERIKSEN (£11.5m from Ajax)
Eriksen has been spoken of as one of Europe’s most exciting young players for a number of years now, so when Spurs acquired his signature it looked like an inspired piece of business. The 22-year-old has yet to hit the heights many expected though.
The Dane has found himself in and out of the team, often not being deployed his preferred role behind the striker, and has struggled to find any kind of consistency. There have been glimpses of brilliance, while his goal in the win away to Manchester United was vital, but he’s certainly not been a superstar.
A bit like Shinji Kagawa at United, he looks too scared to try too much on the ball, opting for the easy pass instead. There can be no doubting Eriksen’s ability, but he certainly can’t be considered a success yet at Spurs.
ERIK LAMELA (£26m from Roma)
Although Soldado has been very poor, Lamela win the prize of Biggest Waste of Money this season. The Argentinian has been woeful whenever he’s played, and the fact that he was signed as a direct replacement for Bale- making him the club’s record signing in the process- makes it even worse.
The former Roma man has not scored in his nine league appearances and, like Chadli, he looks as if he can only cut inside time and time again. You always have to be careful not to judge foreign players too quickly, but at the moment he looks like one of biggest transfer flops in Tottenham’s history.
Who do you think has been Tottenham’s best and worst signing out of the above players?
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