Tottenham are expected to be harsh in January, releasing six first-team players, including two who have started a combined 19 league games this season.
The Spurs’ season has been nothing short of a rollercoaster. They are comfortably within the top four after winning nine of their 15 league games, although they have seldom overwhelmed their opponents as a record of that calibre would imply.
In the Champions League, Tottenham advanced to the last group encounter and had to come from behind away against Marseille to get to the knockout stages.
This season, falling behind has been a common blunder. Although Antonio Conte’s team has proved that they are more than capable of battling back as the game progresses.
Spurs have recently supported their mysterious Italian manager. And this is a pattern that is predicted to continue. Indeed, a hypothetical quadruple January raid including two additional Serie A newcomers was recently floated.
However, before Spurs can continue to make large-scale acquisitions, the team’s fat must be reduced.
On that front, Spurs insider John Wenham believes Fabio Paratici and co. may axe six first-team players in January.
Wenham divided the six-man list into two categories: those who are already surplus to needs and on loan, and those in north London who aren’t fit for purpose.
“Any loan players who have no future at the club, like [Giovani] Lo Celso, ought to go in January,” Wenham told Football Insider.
“[Joe] Rodon and [Tanguy] Ndombele are the three with no future.” It’s only a matter of finding long-term purchasers for them.”
Tottenham loanees succeed outside of north London
Lo Celso is now on loan at Villarreal, while Rodon and Ndombele are both at Rennes. All three loans are for a single season.
Villarreal are said to be interested in signing Lo Celso on a permanent basis, with the Argentine continuing to impress in Spain.
Rennes has the option to purchase centre-half Rodon, who has made 14 appearances in France across all competitions.
Meanwhile, Napoli may sign Ndombele for €30 million at the conclusion of the season. And the Frenchman has proven to be an important squad member for a team that leads Serie A by eight points.
All three might depart in 2023, albeit it seems that they will go in the summer rather than January.
Tottenham insider Wenham mentioned wingers Ryan Sessegnon, Matt Doherty, and Emerson Royal as the second trio on his six-man list.
Sessegnon and Emerson, in particular, have had a lot of appearances this season, totaling 19 league starts.
Wenham, on the other hand, believes none of the three have what it takes to be regular starts for a squad trying to compete for the title under Conte.
How long can the Spurs hang on to Sessegnon’s potential?
“Then you go on to the inept full-backs,” Wenham said.
“I would personally sell both Emerson Royal and Matt Doherty.” I just do not believe they are at the needed level.
“Someone you may believe is harsh, Ryan Sessegnon. You may speak about his potential, but he joined in 2019 and has yet to play under Pochettino, Mourinho, Mason, Nuno, or Conte.
“At what point does it cease to be potential?” I recall hearing some time ago that we were going to give him a new contract.
“It’s funny how all of that chatter has suddenly subsided. He has a contract until 2024, so we have a choice to make; I would let him go.
“He’s not at the level to play in a system where the ability of the wing-backs to provide inventiveness is essential.”
While Wenham makes some fair comments, it’s crucial to remember that any players that are sold must be replaced.
Tottenham aren’t a club with unlimited riches, and with superstars like James Maddison on their radar, they’ll have to make do with the players they already have – even if they’re not of the desired calibre.
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