Brazilian cult hero Hulk has revealed Jose Mourinho tried to bring him to Tottenham during the manager’s spell in north London.
Hulk has had a nomadic career, having played in Japan, Portugal, Russia and China, as well as his native Brazil. The centre-forward is an experienced international – he has featured 49 times for the South American nation, scoring 11 goals.
Arguably his best spell came with FC Porto between 2008 and 2012. Hulk has scored goals at every club he has been at, but with Porto he was competing at the highest level of his career.
He hit 77 goals in 169 matches for the Primeira Liga outfit. He helped Porto to win four league titles and three Portuguese cups before leaving for Zenit St Petersburg in a £33.3million deal.
The attacker never set foot in the Premier League, or one of Europe’s top five divisions for that matter.
It would have been intriguing to see how he would have done. Of course, Hulk’s best attribute is his strength. He probably would have bullied opposition defenders, just like Michail Antonio or Didier Drogba.
But the 35-year-old may have struggled to keep up with the pace of the game in England.
Hulk is now plying his trade with Atletico Mineiro, back in Brazil. During a recent interview, he was asked about transfers which failed to go through.
Hulk opens up on Tottenham ‘proposal’
He said (via Sport Witness): “The only proposal that really weighed for me to go, which I had said ‘yes’, was to England. There was a proposal from Tottenham. Mourinho, at the time, had given the ok.
“And due to the rules, because I was playing in China, a long time without playing in the Brazilian national team, I couldn’t play in England.
“So the lawyers tried to see if there was a loophole, there wasn’t. So it was the proposal that I would have accepted at that moment there.”
Mourinho was in charge of Tottenham between November 2019 and April 2021. So the talks between Spurs and Hulk could have occurred at any point between then.
Hulk would have given Spurs a completely different option to Harry Kane, who remains their talisman.
However, the star never ended up at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and so we are unlikely to see how he would do in the Prem.
Mourinho, meanwhile, is manager at Roma and has just guided them to the inaugural Europa Conference League title.