April 5, 2024

Ange Postecoglou knew when walking through the door at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium that Harry Kane would not be around to spearhead the squad, having graduated from the academy to become the club-record scorer with 280 goals from 435 appearances.


Tottenham Hotspur have come on leaps and bounds this season and it’s probably a good thing that Postecoglou knew his talisman was off, from the off. He knew what to work with, and like any craftsman worth his salt he made good use of what was available.


At least Tottenham turned a sizeable profit, Kane signing for Bayern Munich in August for a base fee of around £82m, having cost a grand sum of nothing initially.



It’s the largest return the Lilywhites have ever made – when considering the profit margins – but it’s not the only time the shrewd and all-registering eye of Daniel Levy has worked some magic in the market, with Kieran Trippier also earning a club a pretty penny, albeit for a lesser reward.


Why Spurs sold Kieran Trippier

Tottenham and right-backs is a tale that has seen its fair share of tumult over the years, but in Pedro Porro, Postecoglou looks like he’s got his hands on a star fit for purpose for many years to come, having signed the Spaniard from Sporting Lisbon on an initial loan in January 2023 and completed the permanent signing last summer for £39m.


Thus ends a several-year-long period of struggle at right-back, with the likes of Serge Aurier and Matt Doherty flattering to deceive after Trippier took his leave in 2019, having completed 114 appearances for Tottenham, scoring two goals and supplying 23 assists.


Kieran Trippier for Tottenham

Tottenham had actually signed Trippier from Burnley back in 2015 after meeting the player’s £3.5m buyout fee, proving to be some bargain for a full-back who would go on to become an established England international and La Liga champion with Atletico Madrid.


For Trippier, a long-term future down at N17 was certainly an option, but he released some scathing comments on the outfit and, namely, Levy, claiming that he was pushed to the exit.


Speaking to The Athletic in 2019, he said: “What annoyed me … as you know, people in football speak and there are always rumours, but I know 100 per cent for a fact – and this is what I was most angry about – that two months before the end of the season, Daniel (Levy, the chairman) was offering me to other clubs.


“I knew for certain that was happening, so I knew my time there must be up. I was playing for my teammates and the supporters, but I also knew I wasn’t wanted.”


Kieran Trippier for Tottenham

Saying that, moving to Madrid saw Trippier’s £50k-per-week salary skyrocket to around £78k-per-week, and given that Diego Simeone’s side offered £25m for his services, it’s hardly surprising that Levy was keen to get a deal done.


Now back in the Premier League and plying his trade with Newcastle United, arguably the lynchpin of this blooming golden era on Tyneside, it’s widely accepted that the Three Lions star’s finest days have come away from Tottenham, but given that his £25m sale marked a 614% rise from the fee paid to bring him to the club, it can only go down as a fantastic deal.


Kieran Trippier’s season in numbers

Trippier ranks among the top 2% of full-backs across Europe’s top five leagues over the past year for assists, shot-creating actions and passes attempted and the top 3% for progressive passes per 90, as per FBref.


The Magpies vice-skipper has posted four goals and 21 assists from 89 matches at Newcastle. He is one of the most creative and influential players – let alone defenders – in the Premier League and has been described as a “hero” for his international escapades by presenter Gary Lineker.


As per Sofascore, Trippier has racked up ten assists from 25 top-flight fixtures this season, averaging 2.5 key passes and 2.3 tackles per game, but there are signs of wear-and-tear and infirmity for this grizzled veteran, who has been criticised for some “disastrous” displays by Harry De Cosemo.


It’s hardly likely that Trippier would prove to be the more athletic, all-encompassing machine than Porro on the Tottenham flank right now, and while he could have been a valuable asset over the past few years, that erstwhile transfer fee reaffirms the accuracy of the deal.


It’s two for Everton! ✌️ There’s another defensive mistake from Kieran Trippier and this time it’s Abdoulaye Doucouré who puts the ball in the back of the net 👏#PLonPrime #EVENEW pic.twitter.com/DpZZQQBSr7 — Amazon Prime Video Sport (@primevideosport) December 7, 2023

Now 33 years old – Trippier will turn 34 shortly into the 2023/24 campaign – the £120k-per-week star is understandably seeing something of a depreciation, with Football Transfers marking his current value at just £13m, which is lower than Spurs ace Oliver Skipp’s valuation of £16m.


Sure, Skipp is a decade younger than his countryman at 23 years old but he has started only four Premier League matches under Postecoglou’s leadership and is surely considered one of the most expendable outlets on the books.



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Having allowed the 5 foot 10 Trippier to forge a successful career overseas, it’s proved to be a successful move for both player and club, albeit with Tottenham spending some three seasons searching for an apt and reliable replacement down the right flank.


Still, it’s quite the profit for Levy and the more recent acquisition of Porro looks to have provided Postecoglou with the perfect tool to fashion success from the edge of the backline.

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