Spurs Opinion: Lilywhites should look at Jack Clarke as a good long-term investment
According to Daily Mail, Spurs have launched a £10million bid for highly-rated 18-year-old Leeds United winger Jack Clarke, with manager Mauricio Pochettino reportedly looking to bolster his attacking options ahead of the upcoming season.
Daily Mail understands that Pochettino has a strong relationship with Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa and given that the Whites might be forced to part ways with some of their exciting prospects after missing out on promotion, a move to north London is very much a possibility for the 18-year-old academy graduate.
Clarke enjoyed a breakthrough in the first-team at Elland Road in the Championship this term and caught the eye of the Premier League clubs with some stellar performances from the bench.
The 18-year-old started only 4 games in the league this past season but his talent and potential haven’t gone unnoticed, with Spurs prepared to bring him to the top-flight.
The youngster proved his worth as an off-the-bench impact player for the Yorkshire giants this season, registering 2 goals and 2 assists in 24 appearances, with 20 of those being cameos as a substitute.
Clarke earned rave reviews for his well-rounded attributes in his debut season at the senior level and Spurs have apparently seen enough in the winger to bring him to the Premier League.
Essentially a right-winger by trade, Clarke is also capable of operating out wide on the left and as a forward in a two-man attack.
A sharp, agile and fleet-footed player noted for his blistering pace, flair, trickery, quick acceleration and drive, the 18-year-old has all the raw attributes to evolve into a future star.
Not only that, he has shown a level of maturity that belies his tender years, both in terms of decision-making and link-up play, which makes him stand head and shoulders above most of the players in the same mould.
To put things into perspective, Jack Clarke may have only played a few games for Leeds in the Championship but he looks like a real talent at this stage on his career and Spurs have every reason to look at him as a good long-term investment.
Agreed, he is one for the future, but moulding talented youngsters into first-team stars has very much been a part of Spurs’ policy over the years and Clarke certainly fits the bill.
The Lilywhites are likely to be desperate to do some fruitful business this summer after failing to sign a single new player for two consecutive transfer windows. Pochettino has still managed to guide the team to the Champions League final but one cannot help but feel that Spurs need more depth and quality in their ranks to challenge for silverware.
Jack Clarke would probably go into Spurs’ youth or reserve side should a move materialize in the summer but he might as well be considered for a bit-part role in the first-team given that the Lilywhites currently do not have much depth in their wide options.
Heung-min Son, Lucas Moura and Erik Lamela are all capable of playing out wide but Clarke might get a crack of the whip should he manage to impress Pochettino with his development in the pre-season friendlies.
The 18-year-old is likely to enjoy more playtime next term in the Championship if he stays put at Elland Road but Leeds might be tempted to boost their transfer budget and trim their wage bill by cashing in on the talented youngster.
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All in all, a move to the Premier League and the prospect of furthering his development under Pochettino should appeal to the 18-year-old and this is a deal that looks likely to happen.