Having lost Dimitar Berbatov and Robbie Keane to big money offers, Spurs were bereft in the goal-scoring department and turned to Roman Pavyluchenko, who had impressed in the summer's European Championships.
Beginning his career playing at Dinamo Stavropol in 1999, Roman moved onto Rotor Volgograd a year later and netted 14 times in 65 matches over a three year period. The move to Moscow Dynamo propelled Pavlyuchenko into the limelight and his goals won him a call up to the Russian national side in 2005.
Top goalscorer in the Russian league in 2006 and joint top scorer in 2007, Pavlyuchenko made a reputation as a regular goalscorer and forced his way into the national side as a regular, noted especially for his predatory ability, which was made clear to English football followers in scoring both goals in a 2-1 win over England in Moscow in a Euro 2008 qualifier. He was a fans favourite at Spartak Moscow and it was hardly surprising with almost a goal every two games, as Spartak were European regulars. He also pleased his country's supporters with scored three goals for Russia as they made it to the semi-final of Euro 2008 before being knocked out by Spain.
The striker was unsure about whether he wanted to leave Russia with his wife Larisa and young daughter Kristina, but decided to join Spurs in a £14 million deal at the end of the August 2008 transfer window. In his first season, he scored 14 goals to give a good return, considering he had been playing football for almost 12 months solid, as the Russian league had just finished when he joined Tottenham. During the campaign, he showed a good touch and the ability to make a goal out of nothing, but he also linked up well and held the ball when playing as the furthest man forward.
However, he looked unhappy with the physical side of the game sometimes and Harry Redknapp wanted him to work harder to defend from the front, but despite rumours of him being one of the players to leave in the summer, it seemed as though he would start the 2009-2010 season at White Hart Lane. But Pav stayed and scored a few more goals in the limited opportunities he had in the first team, but the rumours continued about him wanting away, which came to a head when he was sold on the last day of the January 2012 transfer window to Lokomotiv Moscow.
A player who was regarded as lazy and not up to the job by many Spurs fans, Pav was a forward who always had goals in him and his ratio of one goal to three games (and not whole games at that) is a pretty good one. He could take a goal, but he could also miss one, much like many strikers we had at the time and he did score some special goals (like the volley away at Bolton in 2009).