Wednesday 21 February 2018 / 08:41 PM


First it was Mauricio Pochettino, who indicated that Tottenham would not be looking to match their rivals’ summer spending, and would instead be looking for promising youngsters who could fit in at White Hart Lane.

Then it was Daniel Levy, pouring a whole heap of derision at what he clearly feels has been a ludicrous and unsustainable level of spending from the big Premier League clubs.

And now Jan Vertonghen, an ever present in the Spurs side that finished second last season, has weighed in on the topic, saying that he hopes Tottenham’s rivals continue to spend heavily, because it, “makes it so much better when you beat them”.

The Belgian continued:

“With their spending, a lot of pressure comes on teams. You’ve seen how much money has been spent in the window and there’s still a month to go, it’s crazy”.

Just to be clear, I’ve no doubt that Vertonghen is telling the truth.

It must be immensely satisfying for a football team compiled for less than the cost of Paul Pogba to beat the teams paying the huge transfer fees and doling out the big wage packets.

And he’s also right when he says that when you spend, the expectations of your fans grow, and thus the pressure on you does too.

But nevertheless, I’ll say this, to Vertonghen, Levy and Pochettino:

Pride comes before a fall.

Remember, for all their heroics of last season, Pochettino’s side finished empty handed.

And since that point in time, all the other teams vying for the title and top four have strengthened; some considerably so.

Spurs have done nothing, save letting Kyle Walker go for an eye watering figure.

And unless they’re careful, their subtle boasting about how thrifty they have been could backfire.

Sure, spending significantly on new players does ramp up the pressure on a team, but if you’re spending money on the right players, it can also ramp up the performance that team is capable of, sometimes exponentially.

Spurs were good last season, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be overtaken by United, Liverpool, Arsenal and City.

With the right recruitment at those sides, and without recruitment at Spurs, Pochettino’s side could be left standing still, with their rivals accelerating past them.

Perhaps that won’t be the case, but history suggests that strengthening following a good season is a must – that’s what made Sir Alex Ferguson such a brilliant manager; he knew exactly what he needed to do to stay one step ahead.

Maybe Pochettino does too, and the proof will be in the pudding, but in my view the Spurs brigade would do well to refrain from boasting, otherwise their pudding could be humble pie.

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Seb Greenwood

CBS’s longest-serving contributor, Englishman Seb is our leading football correspondent, pulling no punches with his opinions on the Premier League and the international scene.

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