Micky Hazard: Tottenham winning EL would be 'massive' - Here's why not...

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One-time Tottenham Hotspur man sees the trophy in Europe’s secondary competition as something worth striving for.

The Europa League - the utterance of the very name brings about a peculiar sensation for those that dream of continental glory.

Like the heralded Champions League’s less talented, wealthy and charismatic little cousin it finds itself often cast off, shunted aside as more of an impediment than anything else.

Nonetheless, the tournament offers up a trophy - in Spurs’ case, their last shot at silverware in a season that was seen to hold immense promise ahead of opening day.

Record signing Erik Lamela and the marginally less expensive Roberto Soldado have flopped, Andre Villas-Boas has been relieved of his post and finishing in the top four looks a vain pursuit.

And so Micky Hazard - a vital component in the Tottenham side that lifted the Uefa Cup in 1984 - sees the often maligned Europa League as a brilliant escape from the gripping disappointment.

“Winning a trophy would be a big success for the club,” he said. “By doing that it shows you have the bottle and the character to get across the finishing line and it draws top players to the club.

“Of course, Tottenham want to finish in the top four in the Premier League but winning the Europa League would be a massive achievement.

“The bottom line is that it is a trophy, and a big one at that, and there are not too many around that can be won.”

Indeed, Spurs could pick up a noticeable piece of silverware by winning the Turin final in May, but would that really be enough?

The harsh reality is that doing so would draw the club no closer to the ultimate goal - becoming competitive in the Champions League, dishearteningly elusive in recent years.

It’s no secret that the single greatest draw for top talent is participation on Europe’s greatest stage and unfortunately for Spurs, the new rule granting access to it for Europa League winners doesn’t take effect until the 2015 cycle.

In turn, it’s unlikely is that picking up the trophy would boost the club’s fortunes on the transfer market.

Such is a grave issue given that last summer’s moves made with money reaped from Gareth Bale’s sale have been highly scrutinized, whilst the €5m in prize money paid out to Europa League winners pales in comparison to the windfall achieved from Champions League qualification.

A broader view suggests that whilst seizing the title in northern Italy may provide a short-term lift in spirits, it would do little to enhance Tottenham’s prospects for the future.

The real work will begin in the summer with the resolution of the managerial situation and a carefully charted course for the top four next campaign.

Trophy or not, the situation will remain largely the same for Spurs in the context of the outfit’s greater ambitions.

A Europa League triumph certainly wouldn’t hurt, but wouldn’t quite be a massive achievement or springboard to success given the situation as it lies.

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