ghosts of players past

Ask any Yiddo you come across what they think Spurs are lacking most this season, and I’d be willing to wager that more than three quarters would reply that a No.9 would be at the top of their priority list.

spurs need a striker of the same quality as this potent midfield trio. if only the last world class striker at the club hadn't been sold off.

Sure, a quick look at the squad list shows four international strikers in Defoe, Crouch, Pavlyuchenko and Keane… but isn’t it worrisome that none could be classed as “elite” players?

Defoe could occasionally be labeled as such, but he’s too streaky and injury prone of late. Crouch is largely ineffective domestically since everyone has pretty much figured out how to neutralize his height in England (Europe is another story, however). Pav is extremely inconsistent and moody, largely remaining just as much of an enigma as he was upon his arrival at the Lane. Keane is past his prime after never fully recovering from his bad stint at Liverpool, and is clearly sitting in the shop window.

With a corps of extremely talented midfielders perfectly capable of providing excellent service and balls to the apex of the attack, finding a player that provides a similar level of quality has proven quite the task.

Luckily, a myriad of players have been linked to Tottenham in recent weeks that are of the quality needed to make the club a true challenger. However, none seem likely join at this point. Harry Redknapp really needs to channel his wheelin’-and-dealin’ talents for there to be a realistic chance of landing a Diego ForlánGiuseppe Rossi, Luis Fabiano, or Luis Suarez. And let’s be honeset, there’s not much time left to act.

Daydreaming of potential transfers to fill this hole at Tottenham has been a daily occurrence for me since at least early December. I’m sure my wife and friends have tired of my constant speculation on targets and rumors. Just the other day, I was pondering this very subject yet again during a boring mid-morning meeting and — BOOM — I had an epiphany.

The best possible fit for Spurs is someone that’s already donned the lillywhite strip, but moved on to greener pastures. A former No.9 hero, who’s reputation isn’t the greatest with the club’s faithful following.

Dimitar Berbatov.

Now, let’s ignore for a second that Berba’s £30 million departure to Manchester United likely funded the purchases of players like Luka Modrić, Rafael van der Vaart and Peter Crouch. I’m fully aware that his sale was crucial to the building of the current squad (and maybe buying out the rest of Juande Ramos’s contract… d’oh). Without that massive cash injection, I probably wouldn’t have this exciting of a Spurs squad to regularly froth about.

But honestly, think about it for a minute. Berbatov is without a doubt the most in-form striker in the premier league at the moment (or so EPL fantasy tells me). He’s already acclimated to it’s style of play, which none of the players Spurs have been linked to can boast. He knows the club, he knows White Hart Lane, he knows the fans, he knows everything about Spurs… except their new found ambition.

i'm making the assumption that we wouldn't see this sulky berbatov in the current, ambitious tottenham side.

Dimi would be the perfect target man in Tottenham’s newfangled attack. Envision the quick and crafty 1-2 passes he could exchange with Modrić. Visualize his ability to be in just the right place for a Bale service. Imagine how well he would link up with van der Vaart! Just as was the case when he was with the club a few seasons ago, he would be able to hold the ball up when needed, or lead the side on the break without limiting Spurs’ lightning quick counters.

Admittedly, there a couple of other assumptions that I’m making in this epiphany of mine.

Many of you will remember well the sulky shadow that Berbatov cast during his last months in North London, trying to force a move to his dream destination of dreary Manchester. He was clearly a cancer in the side, and his crap attitude and eventual departure likely contributed to the side’s horrid form in the opening part of the 2008 season.

So I’m assuming if he was in an extremely competitive squad such as the current one, he would have been more satisfied with the club. And then he wouldn’t have demanded a transfer, angered the Yid Army by stabbing them in the back, and we’d have a happy striker on our hands.

In this example, I’m simply postering that he would have never left the club, and therefore he wouldn’t have to bought back in the first place. Even if Tottenham did have to buy him back, wouldn’t it be a huge assumption that United would even want to sell. Prior to his current goal scoring streak, there were some minor rumors of a return to the Lane for the Bulgarian. But it would be absurd for the Red Devils to have given up on such a hefty investment so quickly.

And lastly, isn’t it a bit presumptuous to think he would even want to come back? His league winner’s medal and the ability to be a regular, serious contender in every competition would make choosing to come back to Tottenham a largely risky move. Hell, even if he wanted  to, there’s no guarantee that the fans would even let him come back. Of course, he’d also have to roll back his wages considerably to fit in Spurs rigid pay structure.

Alas, all of these assumptions aren’t worth anything. Berbatov won’t be returning to Spurs anytime soon… if ever. And sadly, that’s the problem with wishing Tottenham had never sold him off in the first place. There’s no sense in crying over spilled milk. It’s stupid to fantisize about “what if” scenarios that will never happen.


…but that won’t stop me from imagining what would if he did come back!

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