The Oxford Dictionary describes a levy as the imposition of a tax or fee, which is often extraordinary or unexpected in nature. And as definitions go, I think this one is pretty much spot on. Just ask David Gill...or Florentino Perez....or the poor bloke who tried to buy a second hand patio set from Daniel Levy on Gumtree last summer. Love him or hate him, you can't dispute the fact that the guy loves a deal. It is also the clearest example of nominative determinism that I have seen in modern day football, since Robbie Fowler got booked on his Liverpool debut or our very own little OzSpur, Thomas Glover decided to pursue a career in goalkeeping. Wordplay. Outstanding. Anyway, rather than wasting everyones time by dwelling on our disappointing start to the new season or speculating as to who put a gypsy curse on Wembley Stadium, I thought I would instead focus on what turned out to be one of the more frustrating yet ultimately successful transfer windows in recent times. After all, this is when Daniel Levy comes into his own. This is Levy Time.
And this summer, it would appear that a lot of unsuspecting people ended up getting Levied. On the face of things, it looked like we had been short changed when we sold Kyle Walker to a direct rival at the beginning of the transfer window. However, Arsenal did the same when they sold Kieran Gibbs to West Brom, so I guess it is rapidly becoming common practice in the Premier League. At the time, £50m appeared a little light based on the way the market was going, however we somehow managed to bring in a younger, seemingly more rounded defender in Serge Aurier, for less than half of what Man City paid us. It took a little longer to go through than most Spurs fans would have liked, as the British government took their sweet old time in granting him a work permit, but I suppose all is well that ends well. And as a result of this masterclass in bureaucracy, the British Home Office now has more assists this season than Mesut Ozil! Now, this signing didn't just represent something of a coup for Spurs but also marked a psychological victory over our arch-nemesis Chelsea, whose entire transfer policy in recent years has revolved around waiting to see which players we target, before swooping in at the last minute and offering to pay double the going rate. I suppose it it still cheaper than paying for your own scouting department in the long run. Anyway, as sure as night follows day, Chelsea made a last ditch bid for Aurier, only to be rebuffed because our wily old Chairman had ingeniously negotiated his own exclusivity rights! Well, you know what they say.....once bitten, twice shylock!
Apparently not content with screwing Chelsea over just the once, we proceeded to give them a dose of their own medicine by poaching Fernando Llorente on deadline day. He may be 32 years old and have the turning circle of a Volvo but it was worth it, just to see them go empty handed for once. Not that it made much difference in the end, as most Chelsea fans will always keep at least one hand free anyway, just in case they are required to salute Hitler. Anyway, aside from a solid summer of Chelsea baiting, Mr. Levy somehow found time to sell Kevin Wimmer (a player that we signed for £3m, two years ago) to Stoke for £18m and bring in a ready made replacement for just Juan Foyth of the price! I know that according to Transfermarket.com, this amount is not strictly accurate but you have to allow me an element of poetic license here, as the gag simply wouldn't work otherwise. Couple this with the acquisition of Davinson Sanchez, one of the most coveted young centre-backs in Europe and we are starting to develop a pretty tasty and future proofed back line. Although I have only seen him play a few times in Lilywhite, he already reminds me of a Colombian Ledley KIng....just with two fully functioning knees. We also saw a number of our fringe players go out on loan, with Josh Onomah heading to Aston Villa, Cameron Carter-Vickers going to Sheffield United and poor old Vincent Janssen forcibly exiled to Fenerbache, where he will be partnering a certain Bobby Soldado up front.....no doubt with hilarious consequences!
Now I know that historically, most fans have been divided in their opinion of Daniel Levy, but I think it is fair to say that this was his most productive transfer window since he unexpectedly bought Rafa Van Der Vaart into our lives. We only lost one key player, who was more than adequately replaced and managed to strengthen the squad as a whole, whilst also making a tidy little profit of £10m to boot. He may be the only millionaire in the world who leaves his Christmas shopping until December 24th, purely for the adrenaline rush but I for one am glad that he has been sitting on our side of the negotiating table for the last 16 years. So, now that the dust has settled and the transfer window has well and truly slammed shut, I hope to God that Mr. Levy can focus his efforts on getting us the hell out of Wembley and in to our expensive new stadium, as soon as possible. Because no matter how well we may have done in the transfer market, this gypsy curse is only getting stronger and I don't think it is even mathematically possible to win the Premier League on away victories alone.