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Spurs to profit from Spaniards’ plight?


Now I know that the transfer window has ended not too long ago, and the summer is a long way off yet, but given the amount of business that Spurs and Atletico Madrid have conducted in recent years, I wonder if we are in a position to take advantage of their financial plight going into the summer.

When going into any transfer window, it is useful to look at the financial circumstances of the teams around us, particularly those on the continent, as transfer windows are a merry-go-round in which there are no orphans; every transfer is a product of several domino effects, and it is rare that a transfer is merely born out of a transaction between two parties.

Indeed, in spite of the final product, several teams are involved in shaping how a transfer materliases, whether as bluffers or bait to drive up players’ prices, or as competition to be wary of – or rather, not wary of.

Like Juventus, whose financial plight I have spoken about in the recent past,  Atletico Madrid are in a bad way. They were not expected to be knocked out of an ostensibly friendly Champions League group so early and with such a whimper, and do not even have any European football to look forward to between now and the summer (any economic enthusiasts can read more about their bleak financial prospects in a piece on their debts here, and one on their wage issues here).

Although their situation is seemingly not of the same severity as that of the Italians (I mean, their boardroom is still intact!), the similarity between the situations is that it is possible that their financial difficulties will impact their dealings with Tottenham.

Like Juve, Atelico have been linked with several players that we’ve also been linked with; several players on their books have been linked with us; and they have been linked with some of our players. Sergio Reguilon is currently on loan at Diego Simeone’s side, and although he has not pulled up any trees with them, the chaps at the Wanda Metropolitano do clearly like doing business with us, as indexed by their signings of Keiran Trippier and Matty Doherty from us.

There has got to be a kind of mutual respect between the two parties, and I do wonder if the favour could be repaid come the summer. Indeed, Atletico winger Yannick Carrasco has been incessantly linked with Spurs since time immemorial, and with doubts over Bryan Gil’s long-term future and Lucas Moura set to leave in the summer, I wonder if there is a chance Spurs will come back in for the Belgian’s services given his versatility across the wide areas, whether as a wing-back or conventional winger.

With Ryan Sessegnon set for a spell on the sidelines and indicating that he has not recovered from his troublesome hamstring injuries, and Ivan Perisic being one for the here and now rather than the long-term at 34-years-old, we could do worse than Carrasco in filling several holes as a squad player, whether as a forward to replace Gil/Moura or wing-back cover for Pedro Porro/Emerson on the right and Sessegnon/Perisic/Udogie on the left.

With Spurs reportedly on the lookout for a long-term successor to Hugo Lloris, renowned Atleti goalkeeper Jan Oblak has strongly been linked with the Lilywhites of late, and his side’s financial desperation may see them lower his traditionally ludicrous asking price, which never seems to veer far from £100 million or so.

Regarding Atletico’s links with Spurs-linked players, Calcio Mercato have reported today that they will rival Spurs’ for Inter Milan’s Hakan Calhanoglu, which is significant given that the midfield area is one of both short-term and long-term concern for Spurs, something I discussed here.

Moreover, fresh reports have emerged today that Borussia Monchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram, a free agent in the summer who Spurs have been eyeing up all year as a potential cut-price option, is of interest to Atletico, but the Spaniards fear that he will opt for a move to the Premiership instead of the Iberian peninsula due to the capacity of English sides to blow them away financially, which may very well open the door for Spurs to muscle in on the Frenchman.

As I say, this is all very speculative, but Atletico’s disappointing European campaign has compromised their finances, and their precarious position in La Liga’s top four may dent this position further. This makes for an interesting dynamic between them and a side who has enjoyed amicable trading relationships in the past, not only in terms of trading more players, but in terms of their ability to compete for similar targets in coming windows, so it’s one to keep an eye on…

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