Whilst Jermain Defoe and, to a much much lesser extent Emmanuel Adebayor have coped relatively well this season, it’s abundantly clear that Villas-Boas needs a top quality striker to come in at White Hart Lane this summer.
The fact that Gareth Bale has performed so well has taken the focus off the forwards to a large extent but the Portuguese boss will want and have to bring in someone who can lead the line and score upwards of 20 goals per season for Spurs.
There have been links to Barcelona’s David Villa for months now but I wonder whether a 31-year-old with complicated injury problems in the last couple of years is the best option available.
22-year-old Aston Villa frontman Christian Benteke would, in my humble opinion, represent a much more dangerous and imposing threat for Spurs and he has proven himself in the Premier League this term – so much so that his value has skyrocketed up to around £20 million.
Spurs do have that kind of cash to throw around this summer, however, and pound for pound, you’d be hard pushed to find a more exciting prospect up front. Benteke’s age makes him, in terms of experience, the antithesis of David Villa but if Tottenham wanted a striker in their absolute prime, perhaps Sevilla’s Alvaro Negredo would be a better option.
His 25 goals in 36 appearances in La Liga alone shows his capability – more than Benteke or Villa and at 27 he is just hitting the peak of his powers. Meanwhile, Spurs have recently been linked with Bayern Munich’s Mario Gomez who is also 27 and has an abundance of experience and quality.
The German is definitely on his way out of the Allianz Arena and we all saw what he can do at the highest level last summer at the European Championship in which he was Germany’s top scorer.
He would represent a real statement of intent if Villas-Boas went out and bought him and, either him or Negredo could both be capable of becoming a Premier League top scorer, without a shadow of a doubt. That’s the level Spurs ought to be aspiring to when consider targets for their front line. Defoe and Adebayor are not going to make that grade, however hard they try.
Meanwhile, Villas-Boas lost out on his long-term target Joao Moutinho to super-rich AS Monaco earlier this month and he is now reportedly lining up Corinthians midfielder Paulinho thought to be on his way for around £17 million.
At 24 years old the Brazilian is the perfect age to hit the ground running for Tottenham – he is exactly the kind of player who can come in to link up with Sandro in the middle of the park to great effect.
Whilst Tottenham are strengthening their midfield, they’ll likely require some flair to combine with Gareth Bale, Aaron Lennon, Lewis Holtby, and Gylfi Sigurdsson. Since the departure of Luka Modric, Spurs really need another creative force in the team.
Speeding Brazilian Bernard has been linked and he would be a quality addition but, for the near-£20 million they’d have to stump up, they may be better off going for a player like Fredy Guarin of Inter Milan.
The 26-year-old Columbian is exactly the kind of creative force Villas-Boas needs and it would be exciting to imagine the combination play between a player like him with Bale, Sandro and Holtby especially. That would really be an imposing mixture and would certainly be enough to challenge for the top four next term.
But, as aforementioned, what Spurs really need to up their game next term is a top quality centre-forward who can score goals at the same rate Bale has done this term. For my money, it would be Negredo or Gomez – either of those would be the best Villas-Boas could bring in, in terms of the impact a player like those can have on the team, the club and the season.