At the time, it looked like a below-average window, but now with the benefit of hindsight, it is evident that the January window may have saved Tottenham Hotspur’s season.
Tottenham Hotspur is a team that lacks the depth of the elite teams in Premier League football. Thus, when you have a transfer window where four players leave and only two return, it seems like maybe things did not go well.
Now a couple of months on from the transfer window and coming from a match where the new players excelled, it is evident that Tottenham made the right moves and may have saved their season in the process. Here are some reasons the January window saved this season.
Addition by subtraction at Tottenham Way
Despite big money and being big names, Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele were not working in north London. Likewise, Dele Alli looked like a player who would never rekindle his prior form. Making matters worse, all three were players often in the news, sulking. Whether through their intermediaries, friends, or social media accounts, none of the three were thrilled to be Spurs.
As anyone who has been part of a team can tell you, it drags everyone down when people do not want to be somewhere. Parting with all three players did more than move deadweight; it also allowed for some attitude adjustment in the Tottenham locker room.
Sure some players still are not playing as much as they would like or maybe should be, if you look at Steven Bergwijn and his contributions versus his minutes, as an example. However, we do not hear about Bergwijn causing problems or sulking around the facility. Likewise, we do not hear negative stories about players like Harry Winks or Joe Rodon, who seem to be on the Conte bus, even if their seat is not good.
The addition by subtraction from January cannot be underestimated with the mental grind ahead of this team. Even more fortunate for Conte, the additions were additions too.