Spurs’ 2013 splurge of signings and what happened – including Saudi Arabia move

With Djed Spence becoming the sixth man through the door at Tottenham this summer there's finally a little optimism in the air again.

The notoriously thrifty Daniel Levy has loosened the purse strings to give Antonio Conte everything he needs to turn the club into title-challengers – and with more signings on the way, Tottenham fans are understandably giddy with excitement.

They haven't been this aggressive in the transfer market since 2013 – their last great splurge – where they spent over £100million filling the great Gareth Bale-shaped hole in their squad.

Seven new players came in that summer, and Daily Star Sport has taken a look back at what happened to each of them.

READ MORE: Antonio Conte says he didn't even pick new £20m signing Djed Spence in awkward admission

Christian Eriksen

Out of the seven signings, Christian Eriksen was the only one to have a genuinely significant impact on Tottenham's team. The Danish midfielder spearheaded the club's rise from Europa League hopefuls to Champions League regulars alongside Harry Kane, Deli Ali and Heung-min Son, and was soon attracting attention from all across Europe.

He moved to Inter Milan in 2020, guiding the club to its first Serie A title in over a decade before nearly losing his life after suffering a cardiac arrest during Denmark's opening match at Euro 2020 last summer.

After being fitted with a implantable cardioverter-defibrillator he was banned from playing in Italy's top tier and secured a short-term move to Brentford, helping the Bees stave off relegation. He then joined Manchester United on free transfer earlier this month, despite reported interest from former club Tottenham.

How would you rate Tottenham's summer business out of 10 so far? Let us know in the comments section.


Tottenham broke their transfer record to sign Paulinho, whose eye for goal, sharp movement and ability on the ball saw him drawing comparisons to Chelsea legend Frank Lampard – but by Christmas it was clear they'd wasted their money.

The Brazilian was never short on talent, but he never seemed to be able to turn that talent into on-field effectiveness, and by the time Mauricio Pochettino arrived a year later, he was deemed surplus to requirements and sold to Chinese Super League side Guangzhou Evergrande.

Barcelona bizarrely came calling 18 months later, but the midfielder only last a season at the Camp Nou before being shipped back to China. A miserable spell in Saudi Arabia followed in 2021 before Paulinho headed home to join Corinthians just a few weeks later.

Vlad Chiriches

Vlad Chiriches never really got a fair look-in at Tottenham, despite being named man of the match on his Premier League debut.

The Romanian defender's versatility was as much a curse as it was a blessing as he found himself playing second-fiddle to Kyle Walker at right-back, and third-fiddle to Jan Vertonghen and Younes Kaboul at centre-back.

He left for Napoli two seasons later, but found game-time just as hard to come by, and jumped ship again to Sassuolo in 2019. The 32-year-old now plies his trade at Cremonese, who have just been promoted to Serie A.

Erik Lamela

Erik Lamela arrived at Tottenham with a bit of a 'potential world beater' vibe about him. The Argentine had netted 15 goals for Roma the season before and given that Barcelona had tried to pinch him as a 12-year-old – reportedly offering his family a home in Spain as well as £100,000 a year – comparisons to Lionel Messi were inevitable.

But as the seasons ticked by, Lamela's ceiling seemed to droop and droop, and though he played an important role in Tottenham's Pochettino-led surge up the table, he was never really a vital cog.

He left somewhat surreptitiously for Sevilla last summer in part exchange for a near carbon copy of younger self, Bryan Gil, but remains a big favourite with Tottenham fans – mainly because he was really good at hating Arsenal and Chelsea!

Roberto Soldado

Every top club needs a top striker and Tottenham fans were thrilled when Roberto Soldado – who had bagged 25, 27 and 30 goals in his three previous seasons at Valencia – joined for £26million, but his move quickly turned into a nightmare.

The Spaniard's confidence in front was goal was decimated after he missed several gilt-edged chances, and after netting just one league goal in a miserable second season at White Hart Lane, he was sold to Villarreal. Moves to Fenerbahce and Granada followed and the striker now turns out for Levante at the grand old age of 37.

Truth be told, Soldado's failings benefitted Tottenham gangbusters given that his poor form allowed a young Harry Kane an unlikely run in the side. Given the future England's captain's underwhelming loan spells at Leicester City and Norwich, it's not impossible to image that he'd have been released had Soldado actually worked out.

Nacer Chadli

Belgium were bringing through some absolutely ridiculous talents a decade ago so it's only natural Tottenham wanted a piece of the pie – though Nacer Chadli was about as similar to Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne as chalk is to cheese.

He spent three seasons at White Hart Lane, playing regularly throughout each of them, but failed to make any sort of significant impact before sold to West Brom in 2016.

Two years later he switched to Monaco and then joined Anderlecht on loan before finally settling at Istanbul Basaksehir in the Turkish Super Lig, where he remains to this day.

Etienne Capoue

Etienne Capoue was always treated like a bit of an also-ran at Tottenham, which is a shame given how the rest of his career has panned out.

The French midfielder found himself battling with Eriksen, Paulinho and Mousa Dembele for a starting spot, and despite the fact he offered plenty his team-mates couldn't, Pochettino sold him to Watford in 2015 – replacing him with Victor Wanyama. At Vicarage Road, Capoue blossomed into a composed, technical destroyer and was snapped up by Villarreal following Watford's relegation to the Championship last year.

He starred as Unai Emery's side beat Manchester United in the Europa League final a few months later, and helped the team reach the semi-final of the Champions League last season, beating Bayern Munich and Juventus along the way.


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