Spurs Put Profit Ahead Of Players With Melbourne Friendly

Spurs Put Profit Ahead Of Players With Melbourne Friendly
Spurs Put Profit Ahead Of Players With Melbourne Friendly

Hours after their 3-0 win over Sheffield United in their final Premier League match, Tottenham Hotspur embarked on a journey to Australia for a post-season friendly. Ange Postecoglou’s squad is set to face Newcastle United at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), on Wednesday.

The decision to travel has sparked criticism from climate change advocates and raised concerns about player fatigue amid an already crowded schedule. Newcastle defender Kieran Trippier voiced his disapproval, saying, “It’s not ideal because it’s a tournament year. I understand why the club are doing it. I’ve done it at Tottenham and [Atlético] Madrid but from my own experience of it, in a tournament year it’s not ideal.”

Responding to these concerns, Postecoglou explained the difference in circumstances between Tottenham and Newcastle. “Our situation is a bit different from Newcastle’s. They’ve had a European season, Champions League, it’s been a big season. We haven’t. It’s no secret part of this [is] exposure but also revenue for us,” he noted.

Postecoglou clarified that such a fixture would not have been considered if Tottenham had been involved in European competitions this season. “I certainly wouldn’t have allowed it to happen if we were in Europe this year and had a bigger game schedule. I probably would have said no to it. And I don’t think the club would have expected us to go. If we’re in Europe next year, I don’t think you’ll be seeing this happen,” he emphasised.

Although acknowledging that the timing isn’t perfect, Postecoglou stressed that the context for his team is unique. “I don’t think it’s ideal. But I think each situation is unique. For us, on the back of our season, to play one more game two days after the end of the season, there is substance to it for us,” he added.

Tottenham’s travelling squad includes 24 players, with notable absentees being Cristian Romero and Pierre-Emile Højbjerg. Other injured players Destiny Udogie, Timo Werner, Ben Davies, Richarlison, Yves Bissouma, Giovani Lo Celso, Fraser Forster, Ryan Sessegnon, and Manor Solomon also missed the trip.

Additionally, Tottenham announced a pre-season tour to South Korea, where they will face Bayern Munich on August 3 at the Seoul World Cup Stadium as part of the Coupang Play Series 2024. This matchup may see reunions with former Spurs players Harry Kane and Eric Dier. This trip marks the fourth visit for Spurs to Son Heung-Min’s homeland.

As Tottenham balances post-season commitments and preparations for the next campaign, this fixture highlights the trade-off between financial incentives and player well-being.

Image courtesy Deposit Photos.

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