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Dealing with weekend rumors

December 15, 2008

Juventus has registered interest in Luka Modric.

This weekend was full of rumors, many of them disconcerting for Spurs fans, as the EPL prepares for the January transfer window. From Luka Modric to Heurelho Gomes to Roman Pavlyuchenko, it seems as if most of Tottenham’s first team squad has been linked elsewhere, even as Harry Redknapp has been linked with players such as Joe Cole and Michael Owen to reinforce his squad.

Perhaps the most disturbing rumor, at least to me, was that Juventus’ director Alessio Secco was in London, looking to initiate a swap in which Spurs would send Modric to the Old Lady for Vincenzo Iaquinta plus cash. This rumor would have seemed to carry more weight two months ago, as Modric struggled to adjust to the Premier League, but the Croatian seems to have found his way and gives Spurs’ attack a completely different look when he is on the pitch. An Italian paper suggested that Modric was unhappy at White Hart Lane and enjoys the prospect of playing in Serie A, but then again, who benefits from spreading that rumor? (Answer: The Italian press, especially if Modric took his immense talents to Juventus.) To sell him in the window (after Redknapp said that he was going to build the team around him) would be a huge mistake. With that said, I’m not sure how much weight this rumor carries, but even so, it caused me with some unrest immediately before Saturday’s fixture.

Keeper seems to be the most examined position at Spurs, as Gomes has come good recently, but that doesn’t seem as if it will prevent Redknapp from seeking out some competition for the Brazilian in January, possibly in the form of Carlos Kameni. Kameni, who is reportedly unhappy at Espanyol, was linked with Tottenham in the summer, but chose to stay with the Spanish club at the time. Now, with Gomes suddenly looking as if he has adjusted to life in the Prem, Tottenham is again being linked with Kameni and Gomes is being linked with a move back to PSV Eindhoven, one that PSV’s director has said Gomes wants. As with all rumors, I’m not sure how much to buy this, as Gomes seems very comfortable under Redknapp, and it may not be the best idea to bring in another highly rated keeper on top of Gomes.

A Gomes for Kameni “trade” would be a bad idea, as we all saw how difficult Gomes’adjustment period was, and Kameni would need to go through the same process until he was fully used to the Premiership. I wouldn’t mind seeing them bring someone like Kameni in if Gomes really does want out, but I wouldn’t think about selling Gomes at least until the summer.

In another rumor, Real Madrid and their new manager Juande Ramos were linked with a bid for Pavyluchenko, the Spurs striker who has been frustratingly inconsistent thus far. With Real heavily linked with Andrei Arshavin, it would only make sense for Ramos to buy Pavyluchenko, too, and complete the strike team that he reportedly wanted to put together for Spurs in the summer. I wouldn’t mind seeing Pavyluchenko leave too much, as long as it meant that Redknapp had more money to spend on his type of players in the transfer window and he spent a fair portion of it on strikers.

Ramos has also been linked with bids for David Bentley (Yeah, right, the man hated playing under Ramos and has only sort of come good since Redknapp took over. He would never play for the Spaniard again.), Didier Zokora (Had the good sense to note that Spurs were linked with all of Sevilla’s players when Ramos came here and none of them came and that this is only the same thing in reverse. He’ll stay at Tottenham.) and Aaron Lennon (Lennon is quickly becoming one of the faces of the team, but if Real really want to pay 22 million pounds for him, they are welcome to by all means.). I’d guess that none of them leave.

The weekend’s final rumor, and the only one that involved players coming to White Hart Lane, involved Redknapp being interested in both Cole and Owen, two prominent English players. Tottenham’s interest in Owen dates to the closing minutes of the summer transfer window, as Owen’s name was one of the ones being thrown about in all of the post-Berbatov sale frenzy. Owen is reportedly unsettled at Newcastle and may be available for the right price, despite the insistence of manager Joe Kinnear that he will be staying at St. James Park. The oft-injured striker would fit in well at Tottenham, at least as a short term fix, but he’s a bit too old to fit into any long-term vision of Harry Houdini.

As for Cole, while his addition would be wonderful from a Spurs’ fan’s point of view, it’s not happening. Another rubbish rumor for News of the World.

Oh, and Kevin Prince-Boateng wants out. Surprise, surprise, even though I feel that the midfielder could improve greatly by moving back to his native Germany or anywhere else where he actually receives opportunities to play.

In the most comforting news, Redknapp discussed his transfer targets and said that he knows exactly who he wants for his squad, which is much more comforting than the helter skelter dealing that Ramos and Comolli partook in. Redknapp, unlike Comolli, has a concrete vision of who he wants to work with and where he wants to take the team, both extremely positive changes that should result in marked improvement in this transfer window.

Originally posted at White Hart Lunatic

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