As more and more reports emerge that a deal has in fact been struck between Valencia and Tottenham Hotspur for Spanish striker Roberto Soldado I try to work out if it’s a good deal.
Now I don’t think many can argue that Valencia have done well to get the £26 million that the deal is apparently worth but what about Tottenham, does this represent a good deal for them?
I think anyone that thinks Spurs are spoilt for choice up front are kidding themselves, but I would hardly consider a team with Gareth Bale, Jermaine Defoe and Emmanuel Adebayor desperate for striking option either, in theory anyway. The much ridiculed Adebayor hardly had a sparkling season and the second half of the season saw an almost disappearance of Defoe, albeit partly due to injury. This left the pressure on Bale, who many forget wasn’t having his greatest spell just before January, to get the goals. This rise to the challenge has seen the Welsh winger linked with moves to Europe’s elite clubs for frankly ridiculous fees.
So what have the White Hart Lane club done about this so far this summer? They have signed midfielders, suggesting a permanent move forward for Bale maybe. So would a 28-year-old striker add any real value to Tottenham? For the answer to that you can ask almost any Spurs fan I guess, but if you look at statistics you get a theory born from logic rather than desperation.
Soldado has scored 81 times in 141 appearances for Valencia which means he will score you two goals every three and a half games, meaning he’d grab you 22 goals(ish) in a season. Last season he made 51 appearances and scored a staggering 34 goals as well as contributing 6 assists.
Last season Spurs looked the metaphorical wolf up against three pigs. At times they scored goals without a worry but as soon as a team set out a rigid defence they ran out of puff at the vital moments. Now I know every team to ever play football can spout lines like “if we scored that goal” or “if we won that game” but Spurs finished just one point behind arch rivals Arsenal for the second season in a row last season meaning they missed out on Champions League football.
I am aware that Spurs’ progress doesn’t necessarily mean they will catch the teams above them next season but I do know that if they don’t progress they will only drop further behind. So if you add a 20-30 goal striker to their team and hold on to key players they have a real chance of reaching Europe’s elite tournament, maybe even more. If they finish 4th next season they deal has paid for itself, if they win a trophy the fans won’t care either way.
So, good deal or not? I think you need look no further than the club motto for the answer here. Audere est Facere.