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Dublin: 9°C Tuesday 20 April 2021

Power ranking Tottenham's 7 post-Bale signings from best to worst

The club’s loss to a struggling Newcastle side saw them slip to 11th at the weekend.

TOTTENHAM SUFFERED AN ignominious 2-1 loss at home to struggling Newcastle at the weekend, with fans now preparing themselves for another disappointing season at White Hart Lane.

The current situation is a far cry from the optimistic outlook permeating the club just over a year ago.

Having sold star man Gareth Bale for a reported world record fee, they attempted to compensate by spending big.

A little over a year on, with the players having been afforded ample time to adjust, we rank each of Spurs’ seven signings from best to worst and contemplate where it all went wrong for the majority of them following that summer of excess*.

7. Christian Eriksen (Cost: £12million)

Britain Soccer Premier League Source: AP/Press Association Images

The one signing that can be judged as an unequivocal success, Eriksen, with his creativity and penchant for the odd spectacular goal has rapidly established himself as a key player at Tottenham.

Yet even the 22-year-old isn’t perfect. He is a little lightweight and thus defensively suspect, prompting Pochettino to substitute at times when Spurs are holding on to a slender lead.

6. Etienne Capoue (Cost: £10million)

Soccer - Barclay's Premier League - Tottenham Hotspur v  Southampton - White Hart Lane Source: Andrew Matthews

Has looked impressive at times, but ultimately the jury is still out on Capoue.

An underwhelming first season saw him make just 12 appearances in the league (granted, he was injured for part of it), but the Frenchman is a clear favourite of Pochettino’s, featuring in all nine of Spurs’ games so far this season.

The 26-year-old’s pass completion percentages are frequently among the highest in the league, yet he can be a little too anonymous at times in games for Tottenham fans’ liking.

5. Erik Lamela (Cost: £30million)

Britain Soccer Europa League Source: AP/Press Association Images

Probably the most difficult of the group to judge, given that he barely featured at all due to injury and Andre Villas-Boas’ ostensible reluctance to play him during the Argentine international’s first season at the club.

Since the start of this season, Lamela has showed signs of brilliance, indicating why Tottenham paid a reported £30million for him in the first place (particularly in the case of THAT goal).

Yet too often, he comes across as naive and ineffectual, such as when he gave away a needless penalty during Spurs’ emphatic loss to Man City recently.

At 22, he could still turn out to be a top player, yet he needs more than the odd spectacular goal in the Europa League to justify his exorbitant price tag.

4. Nacer Chadli (Cost: £7million)

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Tottenham Hotspur v Queens Park Rangers - White Hart Lane Source: Nigel French

Initially looked a poor buy, with just one goal in 24 appearances last season.

However, Chadli started this campaign extremely promisingly, managing four goals in six games to become Tottenham’s top scorer.

Yet for a winger, he is particularly slow, and his inconsistency makes it tempting to suggest he symbolises Tottenham’s problems in microcosm.

Moreover, of late, Chadli has done little of note, and will be under pressure from the likes of Andros Townsend and Aaron Lennon should he continue to underperform.

3. Vlad Chiriches (Cost: £8million)

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Tottenham Hotspur v West Bromwich Albion - White Hart Lane Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

Though his Romanian colleagues have defended him, Chiriches has struggled consistently since joining Tottenham.

Spurs’ defence has looked shaky at the best of times this season, yet the 24-year-old has nonetheless failed to establish himself as a regular starter at the back, featuring just twice in the league this year.

At times, he looks a strong and imposing figure, but there remains a lingering suspicion that he will always have a mistake in him.

2. Roberto Soldado (Cost: £28million)

Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Tottenham Hotspur v Stoke City - White Hart Lane Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

His admirable work-rate means fans have been patient with the goal-shy Spaniard, yet surely by this point, Tottenham must be seriously regretting spending an incredible £28million on the player, who has managed just six goals in 32 league appearances since joining Tottenham, with only two of those strikes coming from open play.

59 goals in 101 games previously for Valencia indicates he has talent, but the challenge of fully adapting to the Premier League is looking beyond him at this stage.

1. Paulinho (Cost: £16million)

Britain Soccer Premier League Source: AP/Press Association Images

The Brazilian showed sporadic moments of promise in his first season at Tottenham, chipping in with some important goals from midfield (a respectable six in 31 to be exact).

However, Paulinho’s stock certainly fell after a very disappointing World Cup showing for Brazil, and this term with Tottenham has been nothing short of a disaster, as he has made just one league appearance all season — tellingly, as a substitute in the 1-0 loss at home to West Brom. Since then, youngsters such as Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb have been preferred to the experienced international, with Mauricio Pochettino recently rejecting suggestions that he might be allowed to leave the club on loan.

*Spurs, of course, have made further signings since that summer, but they were deemed too soon to judge and consequently inappropriate for inclusion on this list.

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About the author:

Paul Fennessy

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