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The Pav saga continues and Keane rumors begin anew

June 29, 2009

Nobody knows if Pav will stay or go.

Roman Pavlyuchenko has been linked with clubs as big as Chelsea and clubs like Turkey’s Besiktas. He has been linked with Stuttgart and Roma and, now, just to ensure that one team in every country is interested in him, he has been linked with Villarreal.

The Russian striker, who some perceive as having flopped in his first season at White Hart Lane (a ridiculous presumption, considering that he had basically been playing for two straight years and was just adjusting to the EPL), has reportedly drawn the interest of the Big Yellow.

The thinking is that Spurs don’t want to lose money on Pav, meaning that they are looking to recoup the transfer fee that they paid for him, which is pricey when one considers that Tottenham paid more for Pav than Arsenal paid for his national team strike partner, Andrei Arshavin. If Harry Redknapp knows what he wants to do with the money coming in, great, Tottenham should sell Pav as soon as possible and buy a replacement striker. If not, they should hang on to him, as the Russian could very well prove to be the target man that Spurs seem to be desperately searching for in this transfer window.

Tottenham should be very wary about selling Pavyluchenko, as he was probably at his absolute worst last season (new language, team in turmoil, constant playing leading to fatigue, changing strike partners, different style of play . . . the reasons just go on) and could develop into an excellent Prem striker yet. In fact, I would bet that if Pav plays next season next to either Robbie Keane or Jermaine Defoe, he excels.

In the same vein, Keane has already been linked to Sunderland and now Aston Villa have reportedly registered an interest in the Spurs captain. There probably isn’t very much to this rumor, as Redknapp has reportedly already prevented Sunderland’s Steve Bruce from making a bid for Keane. It does beg the question, however, when and if the Spurs-Aston Villa swap machine is ever going to go in motion, with Jermaine Jenas and David Bentley being linked to Villa, and Ashley Young and Nigel Reo-Coker have been linked to Spurs. It may never begin, but even if it does I wouldn’t expect to see Keane’s name involved in the eventual dealings. Despite his inability to find the net after returning from his ill-fated time at Anfield, Keane did show himself to be a difference maker on the pitch during his time at the Lane.

Also, Spurs’ pursuit of Newcastle’s Sebastien Bassong appears over, as the Frenchman reportedly was demanding too high of wages. This may be a good thing, as players who play well for bad teams don’t always play well for good teams. (I know, it’s bizarre logic. Just think of a mediocre actor surrounded by terrible actors on a soap opera and that same actor surrounded by stars in a big budget movie. That actor is going to disappear in the movie but be notable in the soap opera.) Bassong needs at least one more year in the Prem before a team like Spurs considers paying him high wages, especially when Jonathan Woodgate and Ledley King are already two of their highest earners. Let Arsenal or Man City spend their money on Bassong.

In other news . . .

Interestingly, Chelsea phenom Michael Mancienne, who played in the EPL last season at the age of 21, is potentially going to be on the block, with clubs like Wolves and Reading showing the most interest so far. If Mancienne really is available, Redknapp should go after him, as he is one of the most touted young talents in all of England and definitely represents a better long-term solution to the defense issue than Richard Dunne, who has repeatedly been linked to Spurs.

In other news around the Prem, Fergie is stepping up his interest in Sergio Aguero, Athletico Madrid’s star Argentinian striker who would be a superstar if he ever suited up for the Red Devils. A part of me hopes that this actually happens, as Aguero is one of the most underrated players in the world right now and would receive the notoriety that he deserves if he moved to Manchester United.

Also, Arsenal are beginning to look like players in this transfer window, as Arsene Wenger has registered interest in Karim Benzema AND Franck Ribery, two of the biggest target of this window. The notoriously thrifty Wenger is apparently looking to change his ways, particularly if he sells Emmanuel Adebayor to AC Milan, as has been rumored in recent weeks. This is scary for Spurs fans worldwide. Fortunately, Wenger will be successful in neither pursuit. (Benzema likely won’t move this summer and Ribery will end up at Real Madrid.)

Frazier Campbell, meanwhile, is set to join Steve Bruce at Sunderland after a protracted negotiation where it looked like the player wasn’t very interested in the team. Campbell, who spent last season on loan at White Hart Lane, showed flashes of brilliance at times and could develop into a very good Jermaine Defoe-esque striker, particularly under that tutelage of Bruce, who seems to develop young players better than most managers in England.

Nothing too fascinating for Spurs today. Hopefully Harry Redknapp gets moving on this transfer market, as the players will begin to fly at some point and I’d much rather Tottenham be a buyer than a spectator.

Originally posted at White Hart Lunatic

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