Thursday, 7 July 2011

Modric to stay, but for how long

The news reports today stating that Luka Modric will remain at Tottenham just do not seem convincing. Whilst speculation has been rife for the last couple of years that he could be Paul Scholes’ long-term replacement his statement last month suggests he has set his heart on a move to Chelsea.

The stance taken by Spurs is correct; the player is under contract and is a vital part of the squad. Having failed to qualify for the Champions League this season they can ill afford to lose one of their best players, and certainly to one of their main rivals. However, the situation seems incredibly similar to that if Dmitar Berbatov’s a few years ago. One feels that as soon as a valuation is met the transfer will go through.

It has already been quite a lively summer for Spurs who have been linked with almost every player in Europe once again. It is understood that Redknapp cannot buy until he sells some of the fringe players. They have a very large squad, and some may argue a very talented one at that. The likes of Bassong, Bentley, Defoe, Hutton and Palacios may all move on which would surely generate £30-40 million. However, this is why the Modric deal is so crucial, and it is why Daniel Levy has become so involved.

If Spurs were to sell Gareth Bale it really would not affect the team that much. He is a promising player but has done nothing consistently to suggest he is anything other than a good prospect. If a club comes in with a bid of anything over £20 million Spurs should bite their hand off. The Welshman clearly has serious back problems and sooner or later the cortisone will stop working and so will he. However, selling Modric would be an admission that Spurs are not capable of holding onto their best players, as they have demonstrated over the last 10 years.

The situation at White Hart Lane is beginning to mirror the scenario across London at Arsenal. Once the senior and best players start to leave the club it becomes very dangerous. Whilst many gooners are convinced they will bounce back one really has to worry for their future next season if Fabregas and Nasri were to leave. Who would want to go there? Spurs face exactly the same issue with Modric. If he leaves why would one of the best strikers in the world go to Tottenham?

The player himself has been very quiet since giving that interview the other month and it is always difficult to believe everything you read at this time of the year. However, with other sides competing for that lucrative top four finish it will be even harder for Spurs to gain qualification next season. It could well be that Modric has a verbal agreement in place that he can leave next year if they fail to qualify.

Daniel Levy has worked very hard to get Spurs to where they are today (even if his manager believes it was entirely his tactical genius that got them there) and he does not want to lose one of his stars. He has dealt with the matter incredibly well thus far but I just do not see this matter coming to an end in the near future; it could well be the Cesc part II saga. The statements and comments look good for Spurs today but this matter is far from over.