New Manchester City signing Kyle Walker’s reported £50 million move from Tottenham Hotspur has caused some discontent amongst his former employer’s supporters, but was it his choice?
The England International will add depth into City’s right-back position following fans’ favourite Pablo Zabaleta leaving. Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola labelled his new signing one of the: “best full-backs in the league” when he faced Spurs in the league in January.
It is clear that Walker boasts vast experience and competency when going forward in addition to his primary role of defending, meaning that the 27-year-old should fit Guardiola’s style of play, and his tendency to use his full-backs in attack.
The deal has meant that the Sheffield-born defender has been labelled, perhaps wrongly, as a ‘snake’ by some of Tottenham’s fans following his departure. This could be due to Walker seemingly appearing as if he was going to stay with the North London club.
One such tweet which perhaps highlights the disenchantment is this:
— Sportsbet.io (@sportsbet_io) July 13, 2017
However, we have to question whether Walker was genuinely under the impression that he was going to stay with Spurs, or if it was his true ambition to leave Tottenham, who impressively finished in second place in the Premier League last season.
Firstly, I’d like to clarify that I am not saying that Walker dislikes his move to Manchester City, rather that I think he may have wanted to stay with Tottenham but didn’t have a future there.
What sways my opinion towards thinking that Walker wanted to primarily stay is that it could have been more of his manager’s decision to sell him. After all, it was reported a couple of months ago that he, and Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino, had fallings out.
Moreover, I believe that Walker, who made more than 200 appearances for Spurs, had a genuine passion for the football club, and a bond with the club’s supporters during his 8 years tenure at White Hart Lane.
Walker did however contend that he left Tottenham to win titles, and enthused about working under his new boss Guardiola stating: “What a manager to work under”.
Now, I know many footballers can be fairly monotone in interviews, but I don’t feel like he looked especially happy, or excited in his first interview in a City shirt.
Despite some Tottenham fans being perhaps surprised and bitter regarding the transfer, the majority of the Spurs faithful do appear to wish Tottenham’s now most expensive defender sold, well in his new chapter.
It will be extremely interesting to see Walker adapt to a new style of football, as well as right-back Kieran Tripper’s chance to save a spot in the Spurs’ starting eleven.
Follow me on Twitter: @GeorgeS_Sport
Feature image credit: ctwino