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After a slow start in the summer transfer window, Tottenham Hotspur turned things around and added a number of key additions to their squad before the deadline.

One name that didn't materialise was that of Schalke's exciting young midfielder, Max Meyer. Despite huge speculation and a contract that runs out next summer, he remained at the Bundesliga club and decided to try his luck under new boss Domenico Tedesco.

After picking up just three assists and one goal in 18 starts, the 22-year-old was hoping to become more of a factor under their new boss.

In seven games he's started just twice this term and a departure in January, well below the reported £38million that Spurs offered on deadline day in 2016, or even on a free come July, could be on the cards.

What Spurs, perhaps because of Daniel Levy, like is value for money. And Mauricio Pochettino is the ideal manager for such a philosophy.

Give him a young, talented and perhaps underrated player and, as recent history indicates, he can mould them into a star. Harry Kane. Dele Alli. Heung Min-Son. Mousa Dembele. The list goes on and on.

Meyer’s potential is huge, he just needs a coach to unlock it. Pochettino could be that man.

It was in 2012, at the European Under-17 Championships, that Meyer’s talent shone through. He was part of an excellent Germany side, one that included Bayern Munich's Niklas Süle, Liverpool transfer target Leon Goretzka, Leverkusen starlet Julian Brandt and RB Leipzig striker Timo Werner

Yet Meyer, who'd honed his skills playing futsal, was the stand-out. He finished top scorer with three goals and was named Player of the Tournament. His star was on the rise.

The 2012/13 campaign saw the diminutive attacking midfielder make the breakthrough into the Schalke first-team. He created a late equaliser in a 2-2 draw against Mainz ten minutes into his debut for the club before making a further five substitute appearances.

In the summer of 2013 the Gelsenkirchen-based club demonstrated their faith in Meyer be handing him the No.7 shirt that hadn’t been filled following legendary Spanish star Raúl’s departure the previous year.

Expectation was increased and in his first full campaign, Meyer struck six goals and created a further three for his team-mates. It was enough for Germany coach Joachim Löw to include the then 18-year-old in his provisional 2014 World Cup squad, although he ultimately was left at home.

But Meyer had piqued the interest of several of European football’s top clubs. Chelsea and Arsenal were both reportedly keen on signing the playmaker. But, sensibly, he wasn’t interested their advances.

He said: “I don’t care about interest from other teams because I’m feeling very good at Schalke. There’s absolutely no reason for me to leave at this stage, so I ignore all rumours.”

But, perhaps, it was the wrong decision to remain with Schalke. The club have failed to trouble the upper echelons of the Bundesliga table over the last three campaigns.

Since Meyer opted to turn down any admiring glances he received, Schalke have finished fifth, sixth and, last season, a disappointing tenth.

Meyer's performances have suffered as a result. His influence on the side has waned over the last three years and during the 2016/17 campaign, he made just 18 Bundesliga starts.

It's perhaps why that loyalty he displayed three years ago has ebbed away. Meyer's contract expires in the summer of 2018 and he won't be signing another.

“I received an offer of a contract extension but with my management I decided to turn it down,” he told BILD this summer.

Tottenham face competition from Liverpool in the race to sign Meyer but, they are also eyeing a move for his team-mate, and the more in-fashion Leon Goretzka.

In the past a move worth over £30million for one of Germany's hottest stars made sense, but now, with a contract winding down and form not at it's peak, Schalke will be lucky to ask for one-third of what Spurs had reportedly put on the table.

But that's not to say Spurs shouldn't be bold and go hard to land Meyer in January.

Last season, despite his limited playing time, Meyer averaged 1.1 key passes per game. While that is well off the exceptional Eriksen (3.1) it does compare favourably with Alli (1.4) and Son (1.3).

And the fact Meyer was registering similar stats in a much weaker side should encourage Tottenham supporters. Yes, he ended the campaign with only three Bundesliga assists to his name but clearly he was creating chances for his team-mates. They are just not taking them.

With more talented players around Meyer and a manager who is adapt at improving players' decision making, you'd expect that number to increase quickly and sharply.

And then Spurs and Pochettino will have landed another young exciting talent for a cut-price deal.

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