Tottenham won 4-0 against Young Boys of Switzerland, confirming their place in the Champions League group stage, and Peter Crouch called for his team to rise to the challenge of meeting the likes of Real Madrid and Internazionale Milan. In fact, Peter Crouch did a little more than that. He actually said he wants to plays the likes of Real Madrid and Internazionale Milan. Considering it is entirely possible that the three teams could all be drawn in the same group stage, because of the seeded draw system for the group stage, Peter Crouch might just regret saying those words on Thursday afternoon.
The Tottenham players will naturally believe they can compete with the best of the teams in the competition, after all Tottenham did defeat Chelsea and Arsenal in the final stages of the last Premiership season. However competing and progressing from a group stage are not necessarily connected. There is correlation but no causation. You can be competitive but it is no guarantee that you will advance. Tottenham will need to find a way of amassing at least ten points, in all likelihood, from just six matches. Considering four of those matches might just be against Real Madrid and Internazionale, or Barcelona and Roma, or Valencia and Bayern Munich, is an indication of just how difficult a task progression to the next knock out stage of the competition will be.
Regardless, Tottenham will now know that they are set to bank close to £22 million, merely by virtue of competing in the group stage. Might the club, now assured of this financial impetus, announce a major signing? Harry Redknapp has confirmed that the club has discussed personal terms with Lassana Diarra but that his wages are too excessive for the Tottenham salary structure. Should Lassana Diarra and Tottenham find a compromise then a deal will happen. Interestingly Lassana Diarra featured for Harry Redknapp at Portsmouth. Tottenham are also known to be interested in a striker but their efforts there are likely to depend on the clubs ability to offload Robbie Keane, clearly unwanted by the manager Harry Redknapp. Italian newspapers suggested, on Wednesday morning, that AC Milan offered Klass Jan Huntelaar to Tottenham. Understanding that Klass Jan Huntelaar has been far from successful at AC Milan and is an admirer of the Premiership this deal also appears likely. Now that the Dutchman knows Tottenham are in the Champions League proper it is only likely to entice him towards making the move even more. Tottenham won 4-0 on the night and might just end up making two signings in the day.
photo credit: Denise&David