Inside Lane: Should Spurs fans be worried by lack of transfer action?

Tottenham fan Daniel Grigg debates whether Lilywhites supporters should be concerned by another slow start to a transfer window.

The summer transfer window hasn’t exactly been action-packed and uplifting for Spurs fans so far, but looking back at recent seasons we are quickly reminded that this is often the case for Tottenham in mid-July.

The nonsense idea that new signings have to have been bought early, and to have had a pre-season at their new clubs in order to start performing, is just that - absolute nonsense.

Of course players need to be match-fit to start the season, but they can get that fitness training almost anywhere.

We’ve also seen numerous footballers who have performed at a top English, Spanish, German or Dutch club, and are able to settle pretty quickly into a style of football that works in the Premier League.


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One of the most successful examples has been our own Rafael van der Vaart, who made such an explosive start to his Tottenham career with some goals early on, despite signing extremely late in last summer’s transfer window.

It was already late in August when William Gallas joined Tottenham on a free transfer last year, having left Arsenal earlier that summer.

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The Frenchman was another who found adjusting to playing for Spurs among a whole new set of team-mates incredibly easy.

In 2009, in Harry Redknapp’s first summer transfer window as Spurs manager, it took him right up until July 22 to make his first signings – Kyle Walker and Kyle Naughton.

Yet, despite all the late signings, which are supposedly meant to produce a lack of cohesion early on in the season, Tottenham’s starts to their last two seasons have been perfectly good.

In 2009/10 the Lilywhites maintained a perfect 100 per cent record through the first four matches, which included Sebastian Bassong’s debut winner against Liverpool in the opening fixture, just days after he signed for the club.

Then last season, despite some disappointing early defeats, Spurs were still up in fifth place by the end of October.

Last year’s World Cup distracted many of us from what was basically a large empty space from a Tottenham perspective - a lot like the one we’ve had in the last couple of months, with Spurs making no major signings, other than free agent Brad Friedel, and not having any games.

Yes, the ongoing failure to recruit a new striker is obviously a concern. There has also been a patent lack of investment so far and, other than Jamie O’Hara, the Lilywhites have also been unable to sell most of their unwanted players.

But, despite all these issues, it’s still ridiculous to get too edgy and downbeat this early in the transfer window.

We all know that Tottenham can ill-afford to repeat the failures of the January transfer window, but as yet they haven’t - and it’s crucial that negativity isn’t allowed to creep into the way the fans view the club.

Admittedly, that has become increasingly difficult, especially when the vast majority of the media’s Spurs coverage has focused on the terribly divisive rumours of Luka Modric moving to Chelsea.

However you look at it, these stories are just thoroughly depressing for the fans and, even if Modric stays, Redknapp would have to be some sort of motivational genius to get anything like the same level of performance from the Croatian playmaker that he produced last season.

A big arrival is needed to change the mood – and perhaps Modric’s mind – but patience is a virtue.

Good things come to those who wait, as the saying goes – and Spurs fans are certainly used to waiting when it comes to transfer windows.

However, their restlessness and irritation will only increase as the days and weeks pass, and the start of the season draws ever nearer.

The majority of Tottenham fans remain patient for now, but chairman Daniel Levy and Redknapp can’t stay inactive too much longer if they wish to start the new campaign in front of a crowd that is genuinely buoyant about their team’s chances.

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