Walking through memories.
Was he pushed or was his head turned?
Kyle walker was bought by Harry Redknapp in 2009 as a makeweight for the Kyle Naughton deal. Having not played many games he was seen at the time as incredibly rough around the edges but with good core strengths and ability. His obvious pace was helpful but it was his willingness to use it at every opportunity going forward or back.
Naughton had played more games was more solid and a year older he looked like the best bet to replace Chimbonda in the first team.
Walker was immediately loaned back to United where he played 26 games and Harry didn’t visit him once. He has spoken before about feeling like an “also ran” but rather than crumbling he set out to become our RB with added determination.
Harry didn’t think so and continued to trust an aging Chimbonda and a stuttering Naughton. Walker was shipped off the to QPR where he did well and then onto Villa where he was brilliant under Houllier and then Macalister in what was a failing but highly talented team.
He came back to spurs and something had changed in Harrys thinking. Whether he had actually gone to see Walker at villa I doubt anyone knows but he played 47 games that season showing that he was solid if yet not quiet the finished article we see today. After this breakthrough season he was never again so consistent with his defending. Whether that was the turmoil at the club affecting him or personal he wasnt the same again till Poch arrived from Southampton and Kyle not only bulked up but seem to get even quicker.
In the coming season he would develop alongside a settled defence and become arguably the most consistent RB in the world with his attacking contribution being the focus of everyone’s admiration.
His pace got him beyond defences and having Kane ahead of him making intelligent movement made his job easy and resulted in a massive uptake of assists.
Fast forward to last season and you see a mixed story. Their were a couple of questions over his contribution to England’s demise at the Euro’s and an early injury have Trippier a couple of games but Walker was out straight back into the side and he had a purple patch around Christmas where he was both solid and dangerous. Rose got injured and Poch started to look at options for the LB position and Davies being far more defensive Poch started to ask more of Walker going forward and this is where the relationship sours. Walker’s contribution was no longer as easily definable, he could no longer get beyond defences because they were sitting so much deeper and this exposed walker’s inability to beat the first man with a cross in the air. He continued trying to play slide rule passes but with Trippier contributing assist after assist in the cup and walker getting a knock Trippier got his chance and took it. Walker played at West ham away where we lost and he was terrible defensively and a couple other games once the season was gone but essentially that was his career at spurs over.
Why City? Well we have always avoided selling players to rivals but I think we took the educated guess that Walker had given us his best and it was time to cash in. His wife had been pushing for a move back oop north and he seemed to want q major pay day to. Everyone’s happy.
Ignoring muggy meme’s and “heartfelt” goodbye videos the feelings were of everyone getting the best out of this deal. Pep gets a half decent RB Poch gets some spending money. Fair trade when we also have Kyle Walker-Peters pushing to be included in the squad…