LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 06: Andy Carroll of Liverpool competes with Benoit Assou-Ekotto of Tottenham Hotspur during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur at Anfield on February 6, 2012 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Benoit Assou-Ekotto, the Tottenham Hotspur left back is one of this communities most beloved players, but it seems that he does not reciprocate our love for him. BAE recently told France Football (as reported here by ESPN) that he may seek to leave White Hart Lane this offseason should an offer to play for a better club come in.
One thing we do know about Assou-Ekotto is that he plays football for the money. It's a job to him. That's fine by me. It's great that he's honest about it. If a big team were to come in with a decent bid for BAE, I honestly wouldn't have a problem letting him go. The problem is, what big club is going to come for him? The 28 year-old Cameroonian is at the peak of his career and probably has at least 3 or 4 more years of top class football in him, but is he good enough for the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, Manchester City, etc.? I don't think so.
One thing to be considered here is that BAE could just be angling for a new contract. There was talk back in February that the Club was planning on offering him a new deal, but I can't find any mention of anything being officially signed. I think Assou-Ekotto is under contract until 2014 so this could just be a move to improve his leverage in contract negotiations.
I've honestly never been as big of a fan of BAE as many people. There was a time when it seemed like he conceded a penalty every couple of weeks. However, over the last two seasons he's been a consistent and important part of this squad and we really don't have a replacement in the squad for him. I'd love for him to stay, especially because he partners so well with Gareth Bale on the left flank.
The loss of BAE wouldn't be too bad though. Mostly because there's probably some decent left backs available (Aleksander Kolarov anyone?), but also because Kyle Naughton can play left back and a pairing of the two Kyles on the Tottenham Hotspur flanks isn't nearly as scary as having Danny Rose being made the full-time starter at left back. Of course, there's always Emile Hesky.