Hindsight really is a wonderful thing.
Back in August, Tottenham Hotspur’s £15 million signing of Matt Doherty looked like one of the best deals done by any Premier League club during the summer transfer window.
This, after all, was a proven, experienced, top-flight operator; one who, on paper at least, looked like an immediate upgrade on the erratic Serge Aurier.
Six months later, however, the narrative has changed somewhat. Suddenly, it feels like a deal that has done no one any favours.
Doherty produced 12 goals and assists from his favoured wing-back role in 2019/20, but has not enjoyed anywhere near the same attacking output in Jose Mourinho’s four-man backline.
He is yet to open his account for Spurs and has only set up one goal for his teammates. Even Wolves are yet to benefit from Doherty’s departure, with Nelson Semedo feeling like a bit of a backwards step despite his Barcelona past.
Meanwhile, a man who held talks with Mourinho before Doherty’s arrival continues to go from strength to strength at the club now sitting four places and five points ahead of Tottenham in the table.
According to Sport/Foot, Tottenham wanted Timothy Castagne from Atalanta. But, with Doherty proving to be the cheaper option, the Belgium international joined Leicester City instead for a cool £18 million.
Yet if last night’s supreme performance against Chelsea is anything to go by – Castagne was brilliant at both ends in a deserved 2-0 win – Spurs might have chosen the wrong man.
It is far too soon to write Doherty off, of course. Just a few months ago, Spurs fans were thrilled to see him arrive.
But it is becoming increasingly clear that, unless Mourinho swaps his tried-and-trusted 4-2-3-1 for a 5-3-2, Doherty will find replicating his stellar Wolves form very difficult indeed.