August 14, 2011
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I wrote about our 25-man squad in May, and how we actually had over 30 players vying to be included in the 25-man squad for Premier League matches.
Since then, we have only managed to shift Jonathan Woodgate (free transfer), Jamie O’Hara (£5m, Wolves), Bongani Khumalo (loan, Reading) and Kyle Naughton (loan, Norwich) of the players that are over the “21 years old” threshold, meaning that we still have five players too many.
On the plus side, Rose, Walker, Townsend and our other young professionals are still “freebies”, as they were born after January 1990. Livermore, born in November 1989, does not quite make the cut and could be a victim of the rule.
Essentially, if the squad were named today, we would be forced to leave out five players – they would not be eligible to play in Premier League matches. The decisions would be simple enough – Alnwick, Button, Livermore, dos Santos and probably Bentley would be left out, presumably with all five being loaned to other clubs or used in the Europa League.
The issue is a bigger one, though – if we want to bring players in, it means we have to leave others out. If we were to sign, for example, a central midfield player and a striker (as has been speculated, with Diarra and Abdeayor strongly linked), it means that we would need to leave out, say, Keane and Palacios. If we were unable to find buyers or loan clubs in time, they would effectively see out a year of their contracts and lose a considerable amount of value.
Most Spurs fans would say that at least three new players are required, and we are leaving it very late to do the necessary outgoing deals, let alone the incoming ones.
NB: As an aside, Newsnow seems to be going absolutely nuts with my old articles – I have no idea what is going on, but I apologise for ruining the Newsnow stream for you all!