For all of his flaws and all of the criticisms he’s rightly or wrongly faced, Daniel Levy knows how to run a football club as a business.
Tottenham Hotspur, perennially seen as inactive or absent transfer operators, have been among Europe’s busiest outfits in the January window and concluded their key business early in the month just as head coach Ange Postecoglou asked.
Timo Werner has joined on a low-risk loan from RB Leipzig, while Spurs beat Bayern Munich to the signing of Genoa’s Radu Dragusin.
There was still enough cash left in the bank for Tottenham to perhaps make one more minor move without the need for outgoings, though the ability to shift some deadwood would have helped them make another splash.
Here are the players they should have been after.
Alright, this one is cheating a bit as Tottenham did target Conor Gallagher. They just couldn’t come up with the funds to pry him away from Chelsea.
As was the case last summer, Spurs really needed to shift Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in order to push aggressively for Gallagher, who is hugely admired by Postecoglou and would have been capable of playing various roles in his system.
90min reported earlier this month Mauricio Pochettino would have tried his best to keep Gallagher, but he may have been powerless if a significant offer came in with the midfielder into the final 18 months of his contract.
Once players return from injuries and international duty, Tottenham will be pretty well stocked in midfield, so the inability to get Gallagher – who was reluctant to leave this month anyway – over the line is hardly a catastrophe.
Tottenham’s January plans involved signing one ready-made versatile forward and one for the future, with Werner coming in on an initial loan and Antonio Nusa viewed as a long-term solution.
Ultimately, Spurs could not give the Norwegian assurances over playing time and he instead focused on a switch to Brentford, only for that deal to fall through due to complications discovered in his medical.
90min revealed in December that Copenhagen were willing to sell the highly-coveted Roony Bardghji, who made headlines across Europe for scoring the winner in a Champions League clash with Manchester United earlier this season. If Tottenham were that keen on a younger winger, the 18-year-old with bags of experience already would have been the perfect option.