Tottenham Hotspur were fairly busy on transfer deadline day, bringing in one right-back and offloading another before the window shut. They signed Emerson Royal from Barcelona and released Serge Aurier on a free transfer, so Nuno Espirito Santo isn’t overstocked with too many players in one position.
Few could argue that Aurier shouldn’t leave Tottenham, but the Lilywhites’ decision to mutually terminate his contract is an odd one. The move will see them take a substantial financial hit, as they won’t get back what they spent four years ago.
Tottenham signed Aurier on a five-year deal from Paris Saint-Germain for £23m in 2017 and paid the 28-year-old £70k-per-week/£3.64m-a-year in wages. He’s set them back around £37.5m which Spurs cannot make back after releasing him.
Aurier he went on to make 110 appearances in all competitions for the Lilywhites, scoring eight goals with 17 assists. He featured in only 19/38 Premier League games last season, however, so the writing was on the wall.
Aurier confirmed his departure on Tuesday evening, thanking Tottenham and the supporters for how they’ve treated him in the last four years. On his Instagram story, the Ivorian international cited the need for a fresh challenge, but Spurs’ problem was finding a willing buyer.
Aurier told Tottenham at the end of last season that he wanted out, but Sky Sports say he wasn’t willing to entertain the alleged interest from Watford, Real Betis, Spartak Moscow and Genoa. He wanted to play at a higher level and was unwilling to spend the final year of his contract in North London, so Spurs had to terminate his deal.
Aurier now has an extended transfer window as a free agent to find a new club, so the move has worked well for him. Tottenham are the losers here, however, as they’ve lost out on a lot of money.
Spurs could have stood their ground and refused to let Aurier leave until a big name put money up, but they’ve instead opted to cut their losses.