Celtic man by far the best of Spurs’ rumoured incoming quartet

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The longer Spurs’ inept performances continue, especially at home, the more likely it is that Mauricio Pochettino will take to his squad like a supercharged hedge trimmer this January.

Indeed, after the Lilywhites stumbled to a goalless draw with Crystal Palace in front of their own fans last time out – the fifth league outing in eight that they’ve failed to win at White Hart Lane – the transfer gossip pages were full with rumours linking four players to the 9/1 top-four outsiders.

Like most impulse buys though, not every player is a good fit so we’ve taken the trouble to grade each one below:

Raul Albiol – D

Spurs centre-backs who have thrived in north London have generally been bought young or developed in house and allowed to grow into a senior role – Ledley King and Michael Dawson being the two obvious examples.

On that basis, and learning from the less-than-impressive showings of players signed in their supposed prime like Federico Fazio and Younes Kaboul, the addition of another leaden footed senior defender should be avoided.

Morgan Schneiderlin – C

The Lilywhites’ window to sign the dynamic French midfielder has well and truly passed. Playing without him on the books this season has afforded Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb more time on the pitch to develop, while the man Spurs signed when Schneiderlin became unavailable, Benjamin Stambouli, has been barely tried yet.

Jay Rodriguez – B

Landing the exotically named Lancastrian would give the Tottenham attack the shot in the arm it sorely needs, adding the striker-come-winger’s pace and finishing ability to a hitherto one dimensional style.

However, with the player on the road to recovery from knee ligament damage and not due back on the pitch until January, signing what is sure to be a rusty forward for big money is a desperate risk

Virgil van Dijk – A

Using the opposite reasoning that ruled out the merits of landing Albiol, Van Dijk would be an inspired capture for Pochettino should he pull it off.

Young enough to grow into being the side’s defensive lynchpin, but quick and powerful enough to cope with the Premier League’s demands right away, Spurs fans must hope their club can beat off interest from Manchester United and Arsenal for the Celtic star.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.