Tuesday, November 29, 2022

Tottenham Hotspur Ace Hints At Desire To Return To His Former Club: Should Spurs Let Him Go?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In  a recent interview with Voetbal International (translated by Football.London), Tottenham Hotspur centre-back Toby Alderweireld, who has been linked with a return to AFC Ajax recently, has revealed that he is considering moving to his former club sometime in the future and said, “I don’t want to make too popular statements, but it is certainly 100 percent in my head.

“I have had wonderful times here with three championships, but also lows. But my family was happy here too.”

The Belgian’s recent words will be a bitter blow to Spurs’ chances of hanging on to his services for the long-run. Football.London has also mentioned that the North London giants had previously decided to extend his contract for a further year which means that he will be available for just £25m during the summer transfer window.

Another Solid Season Under Pochettino’s Tutelage For Alderweireld

The 30-year-old has enjoyed another solid campaign with Spurs so far as his incredible defensive contributions have helped them seal a top 4 place as well as qualify for the final of the UEFA Champions League after they beat AFC Ajax on away goals on Wednesday night.

Alderweireld has featured in a total of 48 matches for Tottenham this season, making an average of 1.0 tackles, 0.7 interceptions and 4.3 clearances per game across all competitions (Stats taken from Whoscored). He has gradually become one of the most influential members of Mauricio Pochettino’s backline so losing him this summer will be a big blow for the North London outfit ahead of the new campaign.

What Makes The Belgian Defender Such An Important Member Of Pochettino’s Team?

Alderweireld is a very reliable defender at the back who has a good football IQ which helps him sense out danger quicker than most other players in his position. The Belgian international can also be a dominant presence in the air at both ends of the pitch. However, father time is catching up to him, and at 30, there are some concerns regarding his ability to keep up a high level of performance consistently.

Can Spurs Afford To Let Him Leave?

Pochettino can use a player of Alderweireld’s experience in the upcoming campaign as he has shown no signs of slowing down during this season. The Belgian centre-half has formed a formidable defensive partnership with Jan Vertonghen and Davinson Sanchez so it would be foolish of Spurs to let him leave without a proper fight. However, the Belgian’s £25m release clause could mean that it might be out of Pochettino’s hands if Alderweireld makes up his mind about moving away from London in this offseason. 

Maybe, a Champions League winner’s medal could change the Belgian’s mind, but for now, it’s not looking good for Tottenham’s chances of keeping him at the new White Hart Lane beyond this summer.

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