How will Erik Lamela respond to Tottenham nearly selling him to Marseille?
Erik Lamela has a crucial few months ahead of him at Tottenham, after almost leaving the club late in the transfer window.
Spurs were in negotiations with Marseille to move him on ahead of the French deadline, only to pull the plug on the deal.
Marseille chairman Vincent Labrune told French newspaper Le Parisien that had Tottenham bought Saido Berahino they would have allowed Lamela to leave, claiming to have had an agreement with the Argentine in place.
Much has been said about Saido Berahino's reaction at not being able to leave West Brom, but it is fair to wonder how Erik Lamela feels at having accepted an offer to quit Tottenham, and then have it denied at the last moment.
The winger has flattered to deceive since signing from Roma two summers ago, with his time at the club riddled with injuries and inconsistent performances - albeit with an impressive highlight reel.
Lamela had not started this season well, playing in just three of the club's four matches, amassing only 113 minutes played of a possible 360.
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He does not look like a player who has confidence in the Premier League, and knowing how close he was to an exit is unlikely to help.
Spurs came close to moving him on, and had business gone their way in terms of incomings, he would be looking forward to playing in France rather than England right now.
In effect though it is as if he is on his last chance at Tottenham - and his commitment to the cause will be tested over the coming months.
Lamela will know that more ineffective performances will make a January exit closer, so if he really wants to stay he needs to start delivering.
To that end two key questions remain; 1) Does he want to continue at White Hart Lane and 2) Is he capable of producing the performances to justify his club record fee?
At present the answer to both questions is yet to be determined, which makes for a key few months ahead.