Tottenham are one signing away from a real title challenge

18/1

TOP BET

Spurs to win the 2016/17 Premier League

Were it not for a final-straight meltdown, Tottenham would have ended last season as Leicester’s closest challengers for the Premier League crown.

Going winless over the final four games of the campaign perhaps highlighted Mauricio Pochettino’s need for summer recruitment this off-season. That point was then hammered home by an extremely tired display from Harry Kane, the club’s only recognised striker, at Euro 2016.

Thankfully for the Lilywhites, the Argentine has heeded the warning signs and acted decisively during the window.

He’s added AZ Alkmaar frontman Vincent Janssen to lighten the load on Kane and plugged another gap in defensive midfield, where Eric Dier was a dominant figure, with Victor Wanyama.

Rumours suggest the wing positions will be strengthened by the arrival of Marseille’s Georges-Kevin N’Koudou, leaving the heart of the defence as the one area of the field that requires attention.

Although it can be argued that Wanyama’s arrival frees up Dier to drop back a position, history suggests Spurs should add an experienced head to their centre-back ranks if they want to challenge for the 2016/17 title.

As has already been highlighted on these pages, the presence of a 30-something centre-half has been crucial for all of the seven top-flight champions this decade.

From Wes Morgan and Robert Huth with the Foxes last term to Ricardo Carvalho at Chelsea during the 2009/10 campaign, each victor has had an experienced head among their defensive ranks. As yet, Spurs lack such a veteran.

There is a suggestion that the club are aware of their need, having been linked with 30-year-old Ragnar Sigurdsson, who starred for Iceland at Euro 2016.

If he, or any other central defender in their 30s, arrives at White Hart Lane this summer, their price of 7/1 to win this season’s title will be well worth a flutter.

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.