Toby Or Not Toby, That Is The Question
Countless column inches have been written about the fact that Tottenham haven’t signed anyone this season, some will argue that it has been to the detriment to the club and others will question whether any new faces would have made all that much difference.
It is a debate that has been drawn out over the past seven or eight months and it is a question that might not be fully answered until the end of this season – especially as there is still a lot to play for between now and the final day of this Premier League campaign.
One of the reasons as to why Tottenham didn’t purchase any players, especially in the summer window, was the fact that there were no departures out of North London – of which Belgian international Toby Alderweireld was believed to be one of them.
With each transfer window that has been and gone, there has always been a feeling of nervous anticipation as to whether the former Southampton defender would be hanging around and it is a feeling that does not dissipate until we get to the point where business cannot be conducted once more.
Therefore with the end of the season on the horizon, we are getting to that point in time when the transfer whispers get a little bit louder and it could well be that the noise coming out of the Alderweireld camp, is not necessarily music to the ears of Tottenham fans.
That’s because the 30-year-old is himself unsure on his future and has stated in a recent interview that he is unsure if he will still be at the club at the start of the 2019/20 season and as a consequence is not looking any further than these next few weeks.
The interesting dilemma is the fact that after a new contract extension was agreed, it also meant that the clause of the player’s sale could also be activated – that is if a potential suitor, stumps up a fee of just £25 million, small change in today’s market you would have to say.
While it is that for reason that Tottenham may have to weigh up what is more important, the bottom line on the balance sheet or keeping hold of one of Europe’s best centre-backs of recent times. A decision that will have to be made between Daniel Levy and Mauricio Pochettino.
With a value of only £25m, you do have to wonder if Tottenham would be better suited to doing their upmost to grant Alderweireld one more season at the club and then letting walk away for a free and although it might not make business sense, it could make football sense.
Because one more season at the club and more importantly a full one at their brand new home, is arguably more useful than just cashing in on a prized asset and if Alderweireld can play a huge part in any potential success, then his input could prove to be priceless.
It does lend itself to being a difficult balancing act for Tottenham and of course a lot will depend on what offers actually come in for the defender, especially at just £25m. If he gets his head turned down by the likes of Manchester United, then it might not be a tough decision that Spurs end up making.
Also you have to take into account that the fact that there were no concrete bids over the two transfer windows, is because the likes of United would have been simply biding their time before any cut price deal could become a distinct possibility.
Therefore it is not a stretch to say that a whole host of Europe’s best will be monitoring this situation with interest and although Alderweireld is not looking past the end of the season, he and Tottenham will soon have tough decisions to make. Toby or not Toby, that is the question.