The realisation that Tottenham Hotspur may well sell Kyle Walker this summer is starting to sink in among the Spurs fans and as such a new right-back will be needed over the coming months.
While Kieran Trippier’s rise to become first-choice will not weaken Mauricio Pochettino’s side overly, seeing Walker leave will still be something of a blow as he has been an important player in the club’s excellent last 24 months.
Looking at replacements, the name that seems to be most-commonly linked is a familiar face – former Tottenham youth player Adam Smith.
The 26-year-old has played well for Bournemouth over the last two seasons and has proven that he is more than good enough to excel in the Premier League.
While it still remains to be seen whether the speculation will be turned into concrete interest, it is worth weighing up the pros and cons of landing Smith this summer as a possible replacement for Walker.
Given that a number of Tottenham’s foreign recruits have failed in recent years, the temptation to buy from within the Premier League is clearly an advantage for the club.
Smith knows English football well and as such there wouldn’t be much of a bedding-in period or the 26-year-old would not need time to adapt.
As a former Spurs youth player, he knows the club well and would be familiar with his surrounds.
Given Tottenham’s home-grown core, there is certainly an appealing argument for adding more local, English talent to the squad.
Style wise, Smith is an attacking full-back that gets forward at every opportunity, is a good distributor of the ball and a decent crosser.
He has displayed tenacity going back towards his own goal, even if he does not have the searing pace that Walker possesses.
Finally, with Smith at a similar level to Trippier, competition for places would be healthy and could well get the best out of both players.
While Smith would be a signing that makes sense, his acquisition certainly would not set hearts racing among the Tottenham support.
A Premier League player with attributes that would fit in with Spurs’ system, the 26-year-old could be a good addition to the squad but certainly would not improve the team.
While Smith has shown he is comfortable at Premier League level, a lack of Champions League experience could be a factor as Tottenham look to make an impression in Europe’s top tournament next season.
With Pochettino’s side looking to progress, challenge for the Premier League title and continue to be North London’s dominant force, this summer’s recruitment offers the chance to add real quality to the squad.
International-calibre players, such as fellow reported target Djibril Sidibe from Monaco, would surely be a more exciting signing and offer a more-rounded option at right-back.
Spurs could well be replacing one of, if not the best right-back in the league – getting a player that is just as good as Walker or better should be the priority.
If Spurs sign Smith this summer, I for one will be happy that the club is getting a committed and able player that would fit in with Tottenham’s ideals under Pochettino.
However, without trying to insult the Bournemouth defender, he should be a very appealing Plan B.
Signing someone like Sidibe or a player that has European and international experience would be a preferred option this summer.
Tottenham need to take advantage of their current status as one of England’s top teams and adding quality to improve the collective, rather than compliment it, should be the major aim.