Tottenham spying ex-Barcelona star to fill void expensive flop will leave after Paratici plan works to perfection
Tottenham could offload an expensive flop in 2023 and have an intriguing replacement lined up who Barcelona already have regrets over selling, per multiple reports.
The £60m Richarlison’s arrival could rise to pending add-ons will become Spurs’ most expensive ever arrival. But before those extras are achieved, Tottenham’s record buy remains French enigma, Tanguy Ndombele.
The midfielder signed for £55.45m from Lyon in 2019, though a succession of managers all failed to bring out his best on a consistent basis.
The end result was Ndombele being loaned out to Napoli over the summer. Ever diligent, Spurs and Fabio Paratici inserted a €30m (approx. £25.75m) option-to-buy seemingly out of hope rather than expectation.
The early signs suggested Napoli had no intention of taking up the option. However, according to a report out of Italy, the situation has changed.
Ndombele has not been a regular starter, though has played an important role in the squad nonetheless. Everything Napoli touch turns to gold at present, with Luciano Spalletti’s side eight points clear atop Serie A at the World Cup break.
Sport Witness carry the news from Italy and claim Ndombele ‘seems to have convinced’ Napoli he’s worth the investment.
Ndombele may well walk the same path fellow Premier League flop Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa took.
The latter was a big-money dud for Fulham, though was later loaned out to Napoli who then activated an option to buy. Anguissa has been a revelation in Naples and is among their most influential midfielders at present.
The report concludes Napoli may try their luck and attempt to negotiate a fee for Ndombele lower than what his option is set at. Regardless, Spurs are stated to ‘want at least €25m (approx. £21.5m)’ and given’s Napoli’s firm interest, may well receive it.
Any such figures are a far cry from the £55.45m Spurs paid in 2019. However, that was a transfer from before Paratici’s time and the Italian may recoup more than many might’ve expected for a player who tanked in England.
Tottenham have replacement in mind?
A second report, this time from Gazzetta dello Sport, outlines Spurs’ interest in a rising midfield star.
Lecce’s Joan Gonzalez, 20, is the player in question and is earning rave reviews for his classy displays this season.
The 6ft 3in midfielder was previously on Barcelona’s books before being allowed to join Lecce in 2021. Via Sport Witness, it’s suggested that’s a decision Barcelona are growing to regret.
Gonzalez is ‘in the sights’ of several club, with Juventus and English trio Tottenham, Everton and West Ham all named.
Juve have dispatched multiple scouts to monitor Gonzalez, though the Turin club may be out of luck. The report adds the English sides ‘above all’ are leading the way for Gonzalez.
Lecce reportedly value their rising star around the €15m (approx. £12m) mark. That is a figure well within any Premier League side’s means, especially Tottenham.
Gonzalez has just 16 senior appearances to his name in his short career to date. As such, he’d appear to represent something of a longer-term project. With the likes of Hojbjerg, Bissouma and Bentancur already in the ranks, that may suit Paratici and co. just fine.
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