Tottenham Hotspur’s reported interest in Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri is interesting for a number of reasons.
Several reports have hinted that Tottenham are considering a move for the Swiss star, who has failed to prosper under the guidance of Pep Guardiola at the Allianz Arena, since the former Barca boss took over.
The biggest and most significant point, should Spurs manage to get him, about Tottenham’s interest in Shaqiri, is the calibre and profile of him as a player.
Tottenham have a top quality squad, but since Gareth Bale left, there is no one individual (other than perhaps Hugo Lloris) who excels in his position in the Spurs side.
Shaqiri could create a throwback to the time when Bale sent shivers down the spines of opposition defenders, because give the game time and freedom to develop, he could turn into a world class player.
It would also be a real statement of intent from the club, as they throw down a marker to say ‘we mean business’ in the January transfer market.
It’s impossible to predict where Tottenham will be in the table by January, but there’s a good chance they’ll be in the mix for at least a top six place, looking for something a little extra as they aim for the top four.
Shaqiri could provide that extra something, making the difference in tight games against the big sides which will be the difference between Europa and Champions League football by the end of the season.
Furthermore, he plays in a position where he wouldn’t really have a serious rival in the squad, which would quickly turn him into one of the most important players in the team
He could play down the right hand side or the left, which gives the boss different options and would also mean he can reinvent himself and do something different, in the face of tactics from the opposition which are working effectively against him.
Finally, and perhaps most significantly, considering the difficulty involved and the likely tams Spurs would have to compete against to sing him, it would do belief in chairman Daniel Levy the world of good because it would be proof Tottenham have got it in them to attract the best players.
With Shaqiri, or a player similar in profile, it would then be easier to attract further targets in the same group.
Sometimes to get to a better level, you first have to get a bit of help from someone already at that level.