Roberto Soldado to Villarreal: Tottenham striker flies to Spain to end disappointing stay as Erik Lamela let's news slip early

Soldado leaves with just seven Premier League goals in two years

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The Independent Football

Roberto Soldado has flown to Spain today to complete his permanent transfer to Villarreal. The move comes after two disappointing years at White Hart Lane, in which the Spanish striker, for all of his efforts, has failed to deliver on the hopes invested in him when Spurs signed him in 2013.

Soldado will always be remembered as one of the post-Gareth Bale players who simply could not hope to fill the gap left when Real Madrid paid Spurs £85million for the Welsh winger. Of all the signings of that summer, Soldado came with the highest profile, and the structured deal Tottenham agreed with Valencia could have reached as much as £27million.

Two years on, Spurs have paid nothing like that much money, Soldado having only scored 16 times for them, just seven of those in the Premier League.

Rik Lamela posted this image on Twitter but it was immediately deleted

“It is true that the club have given him permission to go to Spain,” Mauricio Pochettino confirmed at his press conference today. “Nothing more. That is all that has happened. The club will announce if something happens.”

It was clear enough that Soldado was leaving Tottenham this morning when Erik Lamela tweeted a farewell to his good friend Soldado, even if it was quickly deleted.

When Tottenham fans confirmed on social media that they had seen Soldado at Gatwick Airport, about to board a flight to Spain, the news was out.

Spurs have already moved on Younes Kaboul, Etienne Capoue, Benjamin Stambouli and Vlad Chiriches so far this summer, but Aaron Lennon and Emmanuel Adebayor remain at the club. “He is not in my plans,” Pochettino said of Adebayor earlier today. “He knows.”