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WHAT HAS CHANGED AT TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR?
- Updated: August 20, 2023
The summer period in football is synonymous with change, as the transfer window is in full swing and clubs are presented with the opportunity to strategize their transition from one season to the next.
However, supporters of Tottenham Hotspur, the upcoming opponents of Manchester United on Saturday, are facing a more significant adjustment than usual.
This follows the departure of club captain and record-breaking goalscorer, Harry Kane, whose transfer to Bayern Munich was officially confirmed by the German club last Saturday.
Kane, who had been associated with the Lilywhites for an impressive 19 years, has already made his debut for the Bundesliga team, marking the end of his era at Tottenham.
Having scored an impressive 280 goals in 435 appearances for Spurs and securing three Premier League Golden Boots, the departure of their talismanic former no.10 has left a void in the team’s lineup. The move reportedly brought around €100 million to the club’s finances.
Yet, the most notable transformation might have taken place on the sidelines.
Ange Postecoglou was appointed in June to succeed Antonio Conte, who was followed by interim managers Cristian Stellini and Ryan Mason. Postecoglou had achieved back-to-back Scottish titles with Celtic in an impressive manner.
The Australian coach, who transitioned from Japanese football to Glasgow in 2021, is renowned for his possession-oriented and pressing-based style. So far, fans have embraced this approach as a breath of fresh air, as it contrasts with the more defensive tactics under Conte and his predecessors Nuno Espirito Santo and Jose Mourinho.
“I’ve been explicit about that. It’s not just about winning, it’s the manner in which you win,” stated the former Socceroos coach during his introduction at Spurs. This philosophy was evident in the club’s pre-season matches.
In the matches against West Ham, Singapore’s Lion City Sailors, Shakhtar Donetsk, and Barcelona, a total of 23 goals were scored, with 14 in favor of the Lilywhites. The entertainment didn’t wane as the actual competition commenced.
Tottenham launched their Premier League campaign at Brentford’s Gtech Community Stadium, initially taking the lead with Cristian Romero’s goal. However, goals from Bryan Mbeumo and Yoane Wissa turned the tide. Emerson Royal equalized just before half-time, and despite finishing 2-2, Tottenham held the majority of possession and took more shots than their opponents – a notable achievement at a venue that had been challenging for most teams to visit in the last two seasons.
Postecoglou’s philosophy hasn’t necessitated an extensive overhaul of the squad. Only peripheral players like Harry Winks and Lucas Moura have departed on a permanent basis. Notable additions include Dejan Kulusevski and Pedro Porro, who have now become Tottenham players after loan spells. Additionally, Ashley Phillips and Alejo Veliz are considered signings for the future.
With four significant new arrivals, James Maddison stands out as the marquee signing from the relegated Leicester City.
By – Sahiba Suri