Tottenham Hotspur double deals, and why Alen Halilovic might be nervous

Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly close to agreeing a deal for Alen Halilovic and Tin Jedvaj. Looking at how three of their previous double deals have worked out, the highly-rated Halilovic might be a little wary of joining Spurs.

The double swoop is generally an enjoyable part of the transfer window silly season that rarely actually happens, a little like the cash plus player deals that are often rumoured but almost never actually occur, but this summer Tottenham Hotspur are apparently close to agreeing what would be their fourth swoop for two players in recent times.

A deal for highly rated Dinamo Zagreb youngsters Alen Halilovic and Tin Jedvaj is reportedly close to being finalised according to the Croatian club’s sporting director, with the 17-year-olds likely to stay at Dinamo on loan for a season.

Both Jedvaj and Halilovic are tremendously exciting prospects, but it is the latter who is currently expected to become the better player, having already been capped by Croatia and played Champions League football.

However this might make the youngster a little nervous, as in Spurs previous double swoops, it is the player who arrived with the least fanfare who became the bigger achiever at White Hart Lane.

First there was the move for Matthew Etherington and Simon Davies, who both arrived from Peterborough in the 1999-2000 season. Etherington was viewed as the more exciting of the two players, but never established himself at Spurs, and left after making just 51 appearances. Davies, on the other hand, became somewhat of a stalwart in the side in his six years at White Hart Lane, playing 147 times before moving to Everton.

Then there was Andy Reid and Michael Dawson. Reid arrived as an incredibly talented prospect, but left after two disappointing season with constant questions about his fitness helping to scupper his confidence. Meanwhile Dawson is now club captain at Spurs, and has played for England.

Most recently was the move for Kyle Naughton and Kyle Walker, with the former signed by Spurs after winning the Championship Young Player of the Year and finishing as runner-up for the Player of the Year Award in 2009, a season where Walker barely featured for Sheffield United.

However since the move Walker has established himself as Spurs first choice right-back, and won the Premier League Young Player of the Year award in 2012, whilst Naughton has been reduced to filling in at left-back, and could well be sold this summer.

Perhaps another worry, could come from the double deal Manchester United agreed for Serbian teenage pair Zoran Tosic and Adem Ljajic in 2009. Both have gone onto become talented performers, but not at Old Trafford, with the Red Devils cancelling the Ljajic deal before he even was due to arrive, but not after millions had been wasted on the Tosic transfer.

Halilovic and Jedvaj both clearly have the talent to be a huge success in the future, and the attacking midfielder might go on to become as good as Luka Modric for Spurs if they sign him, but it is interesting to see that in the recent history of double deals at White Hart Lane, it is the less hyped player who has become the bigger success.

images: © jillyspoon, © jasonparis

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