Ranking every first-team signing next Chelsea boss Mauricio Pochettino made at Tottenham from worst to best
Despite his links to Tottenham Hotspur, Mauricio Pochettino looks set to become the next permanent Chelsea manager.
Pochettino won plenty of plaudits during his five years in north London and worked on a tighter budget than the rest of the Premier League’s big six.
The 51-year-old will now be backed financially by free-spending Chelsea owner Todd Boehly but will he spend the money wisely?
We’ve ranked the 27 first-team signings that Pochettino made during his 11 transfer windows at Tottenham and ranked them all from worst to best.
27. Jack Clarke
Pochettino reportedly had zero interest in Clarke but Daniel Levy still sanctioned a £10m deal to sign him from Leeds United in 2019.
He was immediately loaned back to Leeds and didn’t make a single appearance under Pochettino, who was sacked a few months later.
The winger made four substitute appearances for Spurs and had further loan spells at Queens Park Rangers, Stoke City and Sunderland before joining the latter on a permanent deal in 2022.
26. Clinton N’Jie
N’Jie snubbed interest from Arsenal and joined Spurs in an £8.3m deal in 2015 but his solitary season in north London was plagued by injury problems, and he failed to score in 14 appearances for the club.
25. Georges-Kevin Nkoudou
Nkoudou replaced N’Jie at White Hart Lane and proved to be a slight upgrade, registering one goal and two assists in 27 appearances in all competitions.
In 2019 the winger was sold to Turkish side Besiktas for a reported £4.6m,£6.4m less than Spurs had paid for him three years earlier.
24. Federico Fazio
Fazio arrived from Sevilla in 2014 but struggled with the pace of English football and received two red cards within the first four months of his Spurs career.
The Argentina international was deemed surplus to requirements by his compatriot and had loan spells at Sevilla and Roma before joining the latter on a permanent deal in 2017.
23. Vincent Janssen
Spurs forked out £17m for Janssen in 2016 but the striker scored just six goals in 42 appearances for the club, with four of those coming from the penalty spot.
22. Tanguy Ndombele
Tottenham’s record signing, Ndombele has shown flashes of quality in north London but is yet to justify the £63m transfer fee and Spurs are reportedly looking to terminate his contract.
The midfielder famously had a turbulent working relationship with Jose Mourinho, who replaced Pochettino in the Spurs dugout in November 2019.
Still thinking about this finish by Tanguy Ndombele 💫
(🎥 via @SpursOfficial)pic.twitter.com/PH1Cq38yOi
— B/R Football (@brfootball) January 17, 2021
21. Pau Lopez
Not making a single appearance for Spurs has actually helped Lopez, here.
20. Benjamin Stambouli
Stambouli scored one goal in 25 appearances during his solitary season in north London but Spurs managed to sell him for a slight profit to Paris Saint-Germain in 2015.
19. DeAndre Yedlin
Despite only making one first-team appearance for Spurs, Yedlin was still sold to Newcastle United for a £2.6m profit. Not bad business.
18. Giovani Lo Celso
Lo Celso initially joined Tottenham on loan from Real Betis in the summer of 2019 before Mourinho activated the option to buy in January 2020.
The Argentina international arrived with high expectations but failed to replicate his La Liga form in the Premier League and is currently on loan at Villarreal.
17. Serge Aurier
Signed as a direct replacement for Kyle Walker in 2017, Aurier failed to fill the boots of his predecessor and was a defensive liability during his four years in north London.
16. Davinson Sanchez
Having starred for Ajax, Sanchez completed a £42m move to Tottenham in the summer of 2017 but has since been hampered by injuries and inconsistency.
His Spurs career hit a new low during a defeat to Bournemouth in 2023 as he was booed by his own fans and also endured the humiliation of being taken off 23 minutes after coming on as a substitute.
15. Paulo Gazzaniga
After playing under Pochettino at Southampton, Gazzaniga reunited with his compatriot at White Hart Lane in 2017.
The goalkeeper got an extended run in the Spurs side following an injury to Hugo Lloris in 2019/20 but never established himself as their No.1 and was released in 2021.
14. Michel Vorm
The first signing of the Pochettino era, Vorm acted as a reliable understudy to Lloris throughout his Spurs career and made 48 appearances in all competitions, keeping 17 clean sheets.
Still one of my favourite bits of goalkeeping from @Vorm_Official against Liverpool 🙌 #COYSpic.twitter.com/fLgkwQIRh6
— Talking THFC (@TalkingTHFC) October 14, 2019
13. Juan Foyth
An Argentinian defender, Foyth snubbed interest from Paris Saint-Germain and joined Tottenham in 2017 in order to work under Pochettino.
But the 25-year-old fell out of favour following Mourinho’s arrival and completed a £13m move to Villarreal, where he has since gone from strength to strength.
12. Kevin Wimmer
Wimmer arrived in north London in 2015 but struggled to break up the centre-back partnership between Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen, making just 31 first-team appearances for the club.
Spurs were still able to make a £13.7m profit on the Austria international after somehow managing to convince Stoke City to part with £18m in 2017.
11. Ryan Sessegnon
The last signing of the Pochettino era, Sessegnon cost £25m in 2019 but made just two appearances under the Argentine and then spent 2020/21 on loan at Hoffenheim.
“When he (Pochettino) went, it was difficult because he was the main reason why I signed and when I was coming back to full fitness, a new manager had come in,” he later told ESPN.
The 22-year-old still has plenty of time on his side but a mix of injuries and competition for places have hampered his progress.
10. Fernando Llorente
While Llorente only scored two goals in 36 Premier League appearances for Spurs, he makes the top 10 in this list due to his role in their run to the Champions League final in 2018/19.
9. Lucas Moura
Admittedly, Moura has been frustratingly inconsistent since moving to north London in January 2018. But that Champions League semi-final second-leg hat-trick against Ajax has justified the Brazilian’s £25m transfer fee, and more.
Lucas Moura scored with 3 of his 4 shots from inside the box vs. Ajax.
A career highlight. 🇧🇷 pic.twitter.com/gUfY4Alrva
— Statman Dave (@StatmanDave) August 13, 2019
8. Victor Wanyama
After leaving Southampton and reuniting with Pochettino in 2016, Wanyama formed a brilliant midfield partnership with Moussa Dembele and helped Spurs finish second in the Premier League in his debut season.
But injuries then took their toll on the Kenya international, restricting him to a fringe role until his departure in March 2020.
7. Moussa Sissoko
While Sissoko never really justified his £30m price tag, the midfielder bounced back from a disastrous debut season at Spurs and became a key player for both Pochettino and Mourinho.
6. Kieran Trippier
Signed for just £3.5m in 2015, Trippier developed into one of the best right-back’s in the Premier League and helped fill the void left by Kyle Walker’s departure.
He was sold to Atletico Madrid after enduring a difficult 2018/19 season and that decision looks worse with each passing month.
5. Eric Dier
Admittedly, Dier divides opinion among the Spurs fan base and has come in for plenty of criticism at times.
But nobody can deny that the England international, who was signed for just £4m in 2014, has been a key figure under every Spurs manager in the last nine years.
4. Ben Davies
Davies arrived from Swansea alongside Michel Vorm in 2014 and has been a great servant for Spurs, making over 300 appearances in all competitions while showcasing his impressive versatility.
3. Dele Alli
Alli’s stock has plummeted dramatically since Pochettino left north London but we shouldn’t forget how good he was under the Argentine.
The midfielder joined Spurs from MK Dons in a £5m deal and made a seamless transition to the Premier League, winning the PFA Young Player of the Year award in both 2015/16 and 2016/17.
Dele Alli's goal against Crystal Palace just never gets old 😍 #THFC pic.twitter.com/bPDY7GHY8E
— COYS.com (@COYS_com) May 3, 2023
2. Toby Alderweireld
Pochettino angered Southampton supporters by hijacking their move for Alderweireld in the summer of 2015 but the defender was worth all the hassle.
He formed a brilliant centre-back partnership with fellow Belgian Jan Vertonghen and made 236 appearances in all competitions during his six years at the club.
1. Son Heung-min
Initially labelled as a flop following a difficult debut season in 2015/16, Son turned things around and has developed into one of the best forwards in the Premier League.
The South Korea international cost just £22m and has scored 145 goals in all competitions, putting him sixth in Spurs’ all-time scoring chart.
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