The former head of scouting for Tottenham has named three elite players the club missed out on, with Premier League rivals Liverpool and German titans Bayern Munich benefitting from their triple transfer miss.
Tottenham look set for a crucial summer as they aim to get back into the mix for the Premier League title next season. Most of the attention will be focused on star striker Harry Kane, who is wanted by Manchester United.
So far, Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy has been able to keep Kane by setting his price tag incredibly high. In the summer of 2021, when Manchester City came in for him, Levy told them a transfer would only happen at a whopping £150million.
Levy has since had to drop this asking price down to £100m due to the goalscorer’s contract expiring in June 2024. It is now up to Man Utd to decide if this sort of money is worth it for a player who will turn 30 in July. Alternatively, they could prioritise moves for Victor Osimhen or Goncalo Ramos.
Amid all the swirling rumours around Kane, Spurs need to replace goalkeeper Hugo Lloris as the Frenchman is now 36 years old and past his best. Napoli shot-stopper Alex Meret is one option, and the Italy international could be available for a decent price too.
Spurs also need to bring in a new centre-back, with the likes of Eric Dier and Davinson Sanchez not up to standard, while Clement Lenglet’s loan spell will soon end.
But things could have been far different for Spurs if they had signed the players suggested to them by former head of elite identification David Webb.
During an interview with talkSPORT, the 43-year-old has named some of the top-class players Spurs missed out on, including Liverpool hero Sadio Mane and Bayern defender Dayot Upamecano.
Tottenham fail to sign Bundesliga, Ligue 1 stars
“Moussa Dembele and Dayot Upamecano,” Webb replied, when asked about some of the big names Spurs were unable to capture.
“This was at the time that I was there, they were the two standout world-class players.
“Sadio Mane was definitely another one at the time, but Liverpool pipped us to the post.
“[Mauricio] Pochettino at the time obviously had that relationship with him from Southampton.
“That was definitely a factor, Tottenham were pretty close, but Liverpool came in.
“I imagine that was down to finance and not wanting to pay the fee.”
The last comment seems to be a dig at Levy, who is known for his stubbornness in the transfer market.
Webb was then asked if Pochettino will be tempted by the Chelsea job due to their wealth, which should help him land the players he wants. Pochettino is expected to be announced as Chelsea’s new head coach in the next few days.
Ex-Spurs man discusses Pochettino to Chelsea
“Yeah, and I think his experience of being in the Premier League and what he had to work with at Tottenham,” the former scout replied.
“Tottenham was never competing on the same realms of Man City, United, Liverpool and Chelsea in terms of spending power – even Arsenal.
“So it was an incredible job what he did there, Tottenham are still highly competitive in the transfer market, but nowhere near to those levels.
“So I think he would be looking at Chelsea’s squad, obviously they have an array of young talent, loads and loads of money spent.
“He’s very, very good with top, hungry young players. I think that would have been a massive appeal to him as well as he would be able to develop players which he did significantly at Southampton and Tottenham.
“So I think his experience now of going to PSG and working with world-class players has probably helped – definitely not hindered.
“I’m sure if it does materialise at Chelsea, they will get a fantastic manager.”
Pochettino could certainly be handed some top players when heading to Stamford Bridge. There are rumours he wants Inter goalkeeper Andre Onana as his first signing, while Moises Caicedo is another target.