Goal scoring has been a problem for a number of teams this season as their defence struggle with the importance of keeping a clean sheet to win games. One of those teams is Tottenham and they are already looking around Europe for reinforcements – the latest rumoured target is Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi.
The Argentine striker is enjoying his best start to the season with 7 goals in 12 Serie A matches – nearly equalling his season best of 10 goals in the Italian top flight already – and boasts a better conversion rate than fellow countrymen Carlos Tevez (22.3%) and Gonzalo Higuain (24.3%) with 24.6%.
Icardi has already shown in his career that he is a more rounded striker than any on Tottenham’s books with the ability to play off the last defender and linking up with the midfield by either coming deep to support the attack or utilising flicks and lay-offs to stretch opposition defences.
That link-up play hasn’t been seen regularly for Tottenham and the attacking passes by the team in their defeats against Stoke and Newcastle show how sterile the North London club can be in possession and resort to unsuccessful long balls with no physically presence in attack.
Showing an energy to close the opposition down will suit the style of play that Pochettino has tried implement at Tottenham following the success he enjoyed on the south coast with Southampton and has been lacked at White Hart Lane.
Adebayor is the player linked with a move away in January and his lacklustre performances are reminiscent of his final year at Manchester City and the end of 2012/13 season under Andre Villa-Boas. The Togo international has scored twice in the Premier League though despite his low influence in attack – averaging 1.8 shots per match and – which is more than Robert Soldado has offered. The Spainard has endured a torrid time at Tottenham and this season has continued in that vein, struggling to make an impact in his 305 minutes played in the league scoring no goals from 10 shots and winning only 1 of 10 aerial challenges.
Much has been spoke about Harry Kane due to his cup form – 5 goals in 4 Europa League matches and 2 goals in 2 League Cup appearances – and the young striker has scored winning goals in Tottenham’s last two trips away from home in league. Whether he can replicate this form on a consistent basis is unknown, Kane has a 22% conversion rate, and with being the only Spurs striker that can finish at the moment a worry.
A factor Tottenham will have consider Icardi’s very public personal life in the last year – anyone with a Twitter account may have come across the on-goings – and whether the striker is worth the risk particularly with the nature of the tabloid newspapers in England – something another former Inter Milan striker has had to endure during both of his spells in North-West of England.
With the transfer only rumoured at the moment, the transfer fee could be troublesome – Icardi signed for £20 million in the summer of 2013 – following the failings of Tottenham’s big money signings over the last 18 months. Icardi would drastically improve a weak strike force though and could help fire Tottenham back up to the European qualifying spots.