Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Tottenham boss Postecoglou hands midfielder lifeline as Barcelona head ‘four or five’ interested sides

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Giovani Lo Celso, Tottenham, January 2022

Tottenham duo Giovani Lo Celso and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg

Barcelona are reportedly one of “four or five” sides interested in Giovani Lo Celso, but Tottenham boss Ange Postecoglou wants to give him an opportunity to “make an impact”.

Lo Celso has hardly been seen at Spurs since his first season at the club. Indeed, that term he played 28 times in the Premier League, picking up two assists.

But the following season he played just 18 times, and the next term, after starting twice in the league in the first half of the campaign – partially owing to injuries – he was loaned out to Villarreal, where he played the next season and a half.

Injuries have squandered him again this term, though Yves Bissouma and Pape Matar Sarr would have been hard to displace anyway.

Amid a poor run at the club, reports have suggested Lo Celso will be pushed out the door in January.

However, with Bissouma, Sarr and James Maddison all out of action at the moment, and the former pair likely to head off to the African Cup of Nations in the New Year, it’s been suggested Postecoglou will pump the brakes on that exit.

The manager has discussed Lo Celso’s opportunity to make himself a useful asset under his system.

Postecoglou ready to give Lo Celso a crack

“I looked at Lo Celso really well before I got here. You can see he has certain qualities,” Postecoglou said, quoted by Fabrizio Romano.

“He’s had a disruptive season for us. He’s had a few injuries, he hasn’t really had a clean run at it.

“He’s one of a number of players that has happened to, but you can see technically, he’s a very creative player, he works hard for the team.

“He’ll get an opportunity over the next few weeks to hopefully come in and make an impact.”

If he plays well, it’s likely Postecoglou will keep playing him, and the likelihood of an exit may disappear entirely.

Barcelona have eyes on Lo Celso form

That could be to the detriment of Barcelona and other La Liga sides.

Indeed, journalist Tom Allnutt has suggested Barca head the list interested in Lo Celso, with a number of other Spanish sides also in the hunt

“It’s worth saying by the way that if Spurs put him up for sale in January there will be a queue of clubs ready to take him, particularly back in Spain,” Allnutt said on The Tottenham Way.

“Barcelona have always had an interest in Lo Celso, and he’s very much on the list of the top four or five, Atletico, Sevilla, Valencia, Villarreal, all of these clubs have seen Lo Celso doing it week-in, week-out in La Liga.”

If he performs well at Spurs, he may be blocked from a move, but if any of those sides offer enough, there could still be a chance of it happening.

If he doesn’t, though, it could be likely that he’s let go, so those sides will be keeping an eye on his form over the next few weeks.

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