Tottenham Hotspur will finish the English Premier League 2016-17 season as runners-up, following their third place finish last year. This season marks the eighth time in eight seasons that Tottenham have finished sixth or higher in the league.
The team have done everything in their power to finish top of the table, yet for the second straight season it hasn’t been enough to win the league. Now with the Premier League closing up shop after another great season, Tottenham Hotspur are shifting their eyes toward next term, and their undying hopes of winning their first league title since 1961.
Premier League Favourites?
Spurs will be considered by many as favourites going into next season on current form. The likes of Harry Kane, Dele Alli and Hugo Lloris will make the team just as strong when the new season kicks off in August. While Tottenham have a fantastic starting XI and one of the best coaches in European football in Mauricio Pochettino, the team still need reinforcements to challenge the likes of Chelsea.
Last summer’s signing Moussa Sissoko was a bust, and his signing once again proved that teams shouldn’t buy a player based on a good international tournament. Winger Erik Lamela has once again shown he was a poor signing four years ago. The Argentine missed much of the season through injury and his, at the time, record £30 million transfer looks like money flushed down the toilet.
Stronger opposition in 2017-18
Tottenham Hotspur will have to deal with Pep Guardiola’s second season at Manchester City in 2017-18, and a team that will surely buy better players during the summer. Liverpool should continue to be strong under Jurgen Klopp and Chelsea should be just as good under Antonio Conte.
Meanwhile, Arsenal and Manchester United are the big wildcards as knowing what those two sides will look like next season is anyone’s guess right now. Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United will spend big, as they always do, and going after some of Tottenham’s players will most likely be on their agenda.
European football or Premier League?
Repeating as runners-up, or going one better, will be a difficult task for Tottenham Hotspur. Pochettino must contend with the Champions League once more – and possibly the Europea League. The team’s poorest form of the season occurred between October 10th and December 11th.
During that time, Spurs played 13 games in all competitions and lost five of those matches. Two of those losses were Premier League fixtures against Chelsea and Manchester United. If those two fixtures would have been wins, Spurs would currently be on top of the Premier League.
The team may have been great to watch, but fixture congestion hurt them just before Christmas, and without the club making two to three very useful signings, Tottenham will see the same troubles.
Who should Spurs sign this summer?
Players are being linked with Tottenham left and right, and one English newspaper feels Spurs should move for Sampdoria attacker Patrik Schick thanks to his goals per minute average. Schick’s signing would show a different path taken than many of the Premier League’s other top teams. He isn’t quite the name of Manchester United or Arsenal’s top transfer targets, and would show a team looking just slightly under the radar.
If Tottenham Hotspur want to sign the best midfielder in the world currently, then the team will need to dig deep into their pockets. Roma’s Radja Nainggolan has proven he is the top central midfielder around and he is available this summer. Chelsea are already linked with him, and he is not only perfect for Spurs’ midfield; but he fits the classic Spurs’ mould.
Tottenham will have an even more difficult time in their quest for the Premier League title next season. Fighting on four fronts, Pochettino’s side must play mistake-free football in 2017-18 to bring home a league title.
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