Tottenham Hotspur could not have made it any clearer that Vincent Janssen was not needed in North London. If signing Fernando Llorente from Swansea City on deadline day wasn’t enough, Spurs then omitted the Dutchman from their Champions League squad.
Therefore, there was a sense of inevitability when Janssen joined Fenerbahce on a season-long loan. The Turkish window stayed open a week after the English one shut, meaning a move to the Istanbul giants was Janssen’s only real chance of regular football this season.
However, it appears that Janssen did have the opportunity to salvage his Premier League career away from North London.
The Sun (10th September, page 58) reports that the former AZ Alkmaar striker, who cost Spurs £17 million last summer, rejected the chance to join both Newcastle United and Everton on transfer deadline-day.
Opportunity missed or bullet dodged?
The question on the lips of Newcastle fans, however, is whether they have dodged a bullet or missed out on an excellent opportunity to enhance a forward line lacking depth and Premier League quality.
On one hand, you could argue that the fast-paced, technical football played by Spurs simply didn’t suit Janssen and his record of 27 goals for AZ in 2015/16, enough to win the Eredivisie Golden Boot award, is an indicator of his talent. The more direct style employed by Benitez at Newcastle may have fit the physical targetman a little better.
On the other, however, it is difficult to downplay Janssen’s dreadful first season in England. A tally of one goal from open play in 27 league games speaks volumes while his tendency to blaze simple chances wildly off target highlighted a striker whose confidence was at rock bottom.
Whether Janssen would have found his feet at Newcastle, however, we will never know.