Goodbye Kyle Walker

On the 22nd July 2009 it was confirmed that we had made a double signing from Sheffield United for two young full backs coincidentally both named Kyle.  Kyle Naughton stayed with Spurs for a number of years always as a back up really, never getting a run in the team under any manager unless injuries happened before moving on to Swansea.

Kyle Walker however after initial loans to other clubs became not only Spurs first choice right back but also England’s during his time with us.  His explosive pace a weapon finally mastered by Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino who, in his system, seemed to get the very best out of every full back he manages.


I was personally a fan of Kyle Walkers from the first time I saw him play for us and so when at the end of last season rumours started to circulate that he and Pochettino had a falling out I was shocked.  His game has evolved to an almost unrecognisable new level under the Argentinian.  The club are in a much better place now than they have been at any other time during his tenure with us and so I was baffled … why leave us now?

The rumours were everywhere and were wide ranging with everything from an affair causing his wife to demand they move back up north to the player simply wanting to be considered first choice and not rotated.  The truth?  Until the player or manager writes a book in years to come we will probably never know and even then it will be from a certain point of view HOWEVER there are some things that seem to be reported as fact everywhere.


Kyle signed a new deal last season, extending his stay but also getting a significant pay rise to £75,000 per week.  A reward for his much improved consistent performances.  It was also not long after this Kyle now infamously, on an Instagram live video, when answering a fan about a £40m move to Man City replied “Tottenham til I die”.

However Kyle’s agent did take the interest in his player seriously and went back to Daniel Levy demanding a new pay rise for his player, something the Spurs chairman simply shot down.  He even spoke publicly about these demands when he told a meeting of the Supporters Trust; “…players sign new deals and get pay rises and are happy to sign them at the time…. if things were going badly we would not be able to go back and lower their wages…”

The chairman kept his comment vague however it was aimed at Kyle Walkers agent and with the players representatives keen to move their player he himself then reacted badly to being rotated, for the first time.  Many times since the signing of Kieran Tripper Walker spoke about how it helped improve his game – pushing him – now however it was a problem and Kyle demanded to be first choice.

In March the player demanded to start every ‘big’ game or he would leave and at that point Pochettino made the decision he was done at the club.  Many press outlets has “leaked” stories of how the two had fallen out and quoted a source close to the player (his agent).

Daniel Levy however made it clear to him that he signed a new deal and he would only be sold if the offer was right and the club slapped a world record fee on the 27yr old.  A demand that was met by Manchester City yesterday.

I am saddened by the way our relationship with Kyle is ending but I wish him well for the future safe in the knowledge that Pochettino is the man in charge and HE decided Walker was to be sold, not the chairman or the accountant – it was not about the money – it was about attitude and desire to play for the club.

For many years we chopped and changed managers allowing a certain level of player power to grow, now there is no doubt who is in charge and if you cross the boss you are gone.  I back the manager as since he joined he has earned that.

Also, before he arrived Kyle Walker was inconsistent and injury prone… it will be interesting to see if he looks the same player elsewhere.  Time will tell.



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