Search

Inside Lane: Why Paul Mitchell could be a key signing for Spurs

13:03 03 December 2014

Tottenham

Tottenham's new head of recruitment and analysis Paul Mitchell

Archant

Tottenham blogger Henry Tribe discusses Paul Mitchell’s arrival as Spurs’ new head of recruitment and analysis.

He could turn out to be our best signing of the last 18 months.

I’m not talking about any of the players – after all I think it’s fair to say only Christian Erikson could possibly fit that description on the playing side.

No, it was last week’s appointment of Paul Mitchell as our new ‘head of recruitment and analysis’. It’s an impressive job title for someone who seems to have the credentials to match.

In just two and a half years at Southampton he revolutionised the club’s transfer policy – and in the summer oversaw the sale of £95million worth of players including Adam Lallana and Rickie Lambert, while reinvesting £65m of it in players like Graziano Pelle and Dusan Tadic. Sound familiar? Well the difference is he actually managed to improve the squad.

I must admit I was hoping the arrival of Mitchell would see the departure of technical director (or director of football) Franco Baldini. What’s the point of a director of football if it’s not to head up recruitment?

Well somehow Baldini has hung on – for now at least - but you can’t help but feel that the appointment of Mitchell is an acknowledgment from those at the top of the club that they’ve got recruitment desperately wrong over the last 18 months.

We now know the Gareth Bale money wasn’t invested well – too many average and overpriced players, too many players in positions we didn’t need them, and not a single one of them with any experience of the Premier League.

In fact, testament to the poor recruitment strategy is the fact that Mauricio Pochettino, despite starting the season with the likes of Erik Lamela and Etienne Capoue, is increasingly putting his trust in the academy players.

Against Everton, Harry Kane, Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb all started – and they’re all outshining their big money team-mates.

You many have heard of Paul Mitchell’s ‘black box”’ - a small room at Southampton with chairs and a TV screen where the management would scout players from all over the world, while also running detailed analysis on their own squad.

It’s the reason they agreed to sell Calum Chambers to Arsenal for £16m as stats showed Nathaniel Clyne was a better right-back.

Perhaps such a system could work out that Capoue isn’t any better than Sandro, or that Federico Fazio isn’t any better than Michael Dawson.

It’s about time we started targeting the areas in the squad that are genuinely weak and bringing in better players to improve those positions. Hopefully the scattergun approach to our transfer policy is over.

Follow me on Twitter @TribalSpurs

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Tottenham Journal visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Tottenham Journal staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Tottenham Journal account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Tottenham Sports News

Thu, 12:00
Rugby league player Aston Stephenson

There aren’t too many boys who grow up in north London and go to university in rugby union’s heartland – and then become rugby league internationals.

Wed, 16:52
Beth Potter (right) is pursued by her British rivals Kate Avery and Jessica Andrews (second from left), who eventually won the race on the Parliament Hill athletics track. Pic: Mark Shearman

Former world record-holder Dave Bedford says Highgate Harriers’ Night of the 10,000m PBs is a “fascinating event” which is “of great value” to the world of athletics.

Mon, 15:06
North Middlesex captain Tom Nicoll (left) has praised Rob Fahrenheim (right), who hit 96 against Teddington on Saturday. Pic: Max Flego

New signing Rob Fahrenheim led a much-improved batting display from North Middlesex – but the Crouch End outfit suffered their second successive defeat in the Premier Division of the Middlesex County Cricket League.

Thursday, May 19, 2016
Great Britain's Jo Pavey won the 2014 European Championships and will be aiming to qualify for her fifth Olympics when she competes in Highgate Harriers' Night of the 10,000m PBs at Parliament Hill on Saturday

Olympic dreams will be realised and dashed on the Parliament Hill athletics track on Saturday night as Britain’s top 10,000m runners battle it out for seats on the plane to Rio.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!