Just at the moment in which all the right pieces of the jigsaw appeared to be falling neatly into place, a cruel twist of fate has scattered Tottenham’s ambitions for the season in a hammer blow of epic proportions, leaving Daniel Levy with a conundrum to unpick in the final days of the January transfer window.
That hammer blow is, of course, the injury to Harry Kane. Spurs always ran the risk of being left short of options at centre-forward with Kane the only recognised striker of sufficient quality to lead the line, but the situation has been further compounded by the fact Son Heung-min has left north London to link up with the South Korea squad at the Asia Cup.
Son has deputised for Kane in the past to decent effect, so the fact his temporary departure has coincided with Kane’s injury represents a real stroke of misfortune.
If pressure wasn’t already mounting on Levy’s shoulders to act in the market this month then it certainly is now, but the complexity over Tottenham’s problem at centre-forward has left him in an unenviable position.
But a recent report from football.london suggests that Levy has identified a perfect solution to the problem both long-term and short-term, with Hull City’s Jarrod Bowen still firmly on their radar.
The report claims that Spurs had scouts in attendance last weekend when Bowen bagged a brace against Sheffield Wednesday – a performance which will be giving Levy plenty to think about in light of Kane’s lengthy layoff – and his price-tag is hovering around the £18 million mark following an electric opening to the campaign.
First and foremost, it ought to be acknowledged that Bowen is a right-winger by trade and not a natural centre-forward, although his goal scoring return and exemplary work-rate suggest he could fill in when required.
Bowen is at his exhilarating best when he is running with the ball glued to his tantalising left-boot, forcing defenders to back off with his agility and trickery before utilising his excellent finishing ability in and around the penalty area.
Any potential deal which saw Hull City’s crown jewel arrive in north London would presumably be made with a view to Bowen operating at centre-forward on a temporary basis, or using him to occupy space in midfield to facilitate a new-look role for the likes of Lucas Moura or Dele Alli at the spearhead of the attack.
Spurs supporters may feel frustrated if Tottenham fail to sign a new natural centre-forward, but with a quality marksman unlikely to be willing to fill in before Kane inevitably returns to the starting XI the signing of a versatile attacking player is the ideal solution.
At £18 million Bowen represents excellent value: he has enormous scope for improvement at just 22-years-old, a proven track record in the Championship, would contribute to the homegrown quota and is capable of playing in a multitude of attacking roles.
On paper, Bowen could ease the burden of Kane’s absence in the coming months and offer a long-term option to thrive under Pochettino as opposed to a short-term centre-forward option who would effectively be redundant when Tottenham’s talisman returns in March.
It’s exactly the type of deal which will speak to Levy under the current circumstances, and if the Tigers are willing to negotiate a deal around the £18 million mark for Bowen there is no question it’s one which he should sanction.
Tottenham fans – thoughts? Let us know below!