By Ryan Baldi, Football Whispers
Tottenham Hotspur are the only Premier League club yet to spend any money in the transfer market this summer, with supporters – and players, as Danny Rose’s recent interview with The Sun showed – growing frustrated and worried that the club will be left behind.
But, speaking to TalkSport this week, Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino confirmed that the short-term Wembley residents will indeed dip into their pockets for new arrivals.
“For sure we’re going to spend,” the Argentine tactician said.
“We’re going to strengthen our squad and sign some players who can help us fight – we need new energy in the team.
“We have a very confident team who are ready to challenge again for a big season, but it’s true we have the responsibility to try to provide some new energy every season.”
One key area that needs strengthening is the striking department, with Vincent Janssen, a £17million acquisition from AZ Alkmaar last summer, failing to provide adequate cover and support for Harry Kane.
Our friends at Football Whispers have picked out five centre-forwards who could ease the England star’s goal-scoring burden.
Joshua King – Bournemouth
Rumoured to be a Spurs transfer target, former Manchester United academy standout King showed huge developmental progress with Bournemouth last season, exhibiting a greater degree of composure in front of goal and improved movement.
The 25-year-old Norway international returned 16 league goals – more than his previous career tally combined – and looks ready to take a step up.
Fast, strong and a clean striker of the ball, King would offer a slightly more direct approach than Kane, while his work rate and discipline would allow him to slot into Pochettino’s system seamlessly.
Moussa Dembele – Celtic
The star of Celtic‘s undefeated Scottish Premier League campaign in 2016/17, Dembele joined the Hoops on a free transfer from Fulham and is now valued at more than £30million.
The one-time Chelsea transfer target bagged 32 goals in all competitions last season and has been prolific for the French under-21s since making his debut last October.
Regarded as one of the most exciting young strikers in Europe, Spurs would have stiff competition for Dembele were they to make a move. And the 21-year-old may not be too enamoured with the thought of playing second fiddle to Kane.
But signing a player of his quality and promise would be a huge statement for Spurs, further bolstering their already potent attack.
Giovanni Simeone – Genoa
Son of Atletico Madrid manager and former Argentina international midfielder Diego Simeone, the 22-year-old Genoa striker has been making waves in Serie A since his first-team breakthrough at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris less than a year ago.
Simeone, who was signed from River Plate for just €3million last summer, netted an impressive 11 goals in 30 Italian top-flight outings in 2016/17, bringing him to the attention of several of Serie A’s big hitters.
At a shade under 6ft tall, the young striker is physically robust and has the priceless knack of picking up pockets of space inside the penalty area.
Not quite ready for a starring role in a top side, Simeone would represent an investment in Tottenham‘s future and a solid squad option for the present.
Alassane Plea – Nice
Nice striker Plea recorded a career-high return of 14 goals in 32 games last season, despite missing the final months of the campaign through injury.
At 24 he is still developing and the French forward showed a newfound assurance in front of goal last season, forming a key part of Lucien Favre’s side.
Blessed with tremendous pace and a mature awareness of his surroundings, Plea is as effective out on the wings as he is leading the line.
This versatility makes the France Under-21 international an ideal option for Spurs as he can fulfil a number of attacking roles.
DUVAN ZAPATA - UDINESE
Contracted to Napoli, powerful Colombian striker Zapata has spent the last two seasons on loan with Udinese, scoring 18 times in 63 outings for the Zebrette.
That goals return may not seem especially impressive, but given that he was playing for a team who finished 17th and 13th in his two campaigns at the Dacia Arena, his record is more than respectable.
Strong, athletic and standing at 6ft 2ins, Zapata has the physical tools to trouble any marking defender, but he also has a deftness about him and the ability to wriggle away from challenges to create openings for himself.
With his unique skillset, Zapata could be a viable plan B for Spurs.