Former Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Jamie O’Hara has expressed his surprise that the club appears willing to let the contract of three key players run down.
Defenders Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld will see their current deals expire in the summer as will playmaker Christian Eriksen.
All three players were linked with moves to clubs around Europe during the summer, but they have all remained at the New White Hart Lane.
The 32-year old, who came through the youth ranks at Spurs and made 56 appearances for the North London outfit, is surprised that chairman Daniel Levy has allowed their contracts to run down as on previous occasions he has handed extensions or agreed to fresh terms.
“I am really surprised that Levy has allowed these players to get into the last year,” O’Hara said on TalkSport (9.24am, September 5 2019).
“It’s something he would never normally do. He would always give them new contracts, he would always extend contracts, and to let big players like that go down into their last year, I am really surprised with.”
Spurs risk losing three key players on a free transfer next summer or will have to sell at a cut-price during the January transfer window to recoup any money.
Alderweireld has started all four Premier League matches while Eriksen has started two and made two further appearances from the substitutes bench but Vertonghen has played just once and wasn’t in the squad for the opening game against Aston Villa.
Spurs spent around £100million on transfers during the summer. Jack Clarke arrived from Leeds United for £10m but was allowed to return to the Whites on a season-long loan while £55m was shelled out on midfielder Tanguy Ndombele from Lyon and £25m on Ryan Sessegnon from Fulham.
At 32, it could be the last season for Vertonghen at Tottenham with manager Mauricio Pochettino preferring young players. The defender arrived in North London in 2012 from Ajax and has made 286 appearances for the club.
Spurs triggered an extension clause in Alderweireld’s contract at the end of last season, which is rumoured to have a £25m release clause, but there appears to be no sign of fresh talks between club and player.
Eriksen is considered one of the best midfielders in Europe and was linked with a move to Spain during the summer. The Denmark international has been a mainstay of the Tottenham midfield since his arrival in 2013 and would be a major loss to the club should he be able to walk away on a free transfer come to the end of the season.
Spurs will be looking to get back to winning ways after letting a two-goal lead slip in the derby with Arsenal last Sunday as they host Crystal Palace at the New White Hart Lane.