English Premiership

Hoddle: Bale money wasted

2014-03-20 20:32
Gareth Bale (AFP)

London - Tottenham Hotspur have squandered the €100 million they received from Real Madrid for Gareth Bale and need a better strategy to challenge England's top clubs, former player and manager Glenn Hoddle believes.

Hoddle, one of the club's greatest midfielders and who managed Spurs from 2001-03, has watched his former club fall behind this season following the sale of the outstanding Bale to the Spanish giants in August.

"Tottenham spent £110 million replacing Gareth Bale and Tom Huddlestone with a deluge of new signings in the summer. Good players, but not great ones," Hoddle said in a column on the Bleacher Report website.

"The club have bought the wrong type of players, proving that throwing money at new signings is not always the answer.

"There needs to be a better strategy going forward to provide more stability.

"The issue is building a team with the right blend, the right style, and that hasn't happened yet."

While Bale's protracted move went through last year, Spurs worked overtime in the transfer market, twice breaking their transfer record to sign striker Roberto Soldado and Argentine Erik Lamela as well as the likes of Danish midfielder Christian Eriksen from Ajax and Brazil international Paulinho.

The new faces have failed to gel, however, and some heavy defeats cost coach Andre Villas-Boas his job in December, six months after the Portuguese boss led Spurs to their highest ever Premier League points total.

Defeat by Arsenal last weekend all but ended fifth-placed Tottenham's hopes of finishing in the top four.

Hoddle said that Tottenham have been too predictable all season and not given Soldado the kind of service he was used to while racking up the goals in Spain.

The Spaniard, who cost a reported £26 million, has scored only six league goals and did not even make the starting line-up in Tottenham's last three matches, league games against Chelsea and Arsenal and a Europa league tie against Benfica.

"The team just lacks vision, and far too often we see the ball moved sideways or back rather than someone able to spot the right pass going forward," Hoddle said.

"In the opening six games, Roberto Soldado was running into spaces and channels, but he soon stopped, as the ball was never delivered when he made those moves, and therein lies the crux of the problem.

"Whenever I watch the team, I don't see the pass that is going to hurt the opposition."

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