Julio Baptista is being linked with a move to Tottenham this summer, but is the man they call ‘The Beast’ really what they need, and could he be a success at the club? Baptista didn’t have the best of times during his last spell in North London and didn’t make a massive impact or lived up to the hype that was previously surrounding him.
Wenger signed Baptista on a year’s loan from Real Madrid in 2006. The Brazilian was used as both a midfielder and a striker whilst at Arsenal and it was difficult to tell where his best position was. Baptista was a popular player amongst Arsenal fans due to his tenacious and wholehearted approach and as a result he was given a warm reception when he went back to the Emirates with his current club Roma in the Champions League.
At the end of his one and only season with Arsenal, Wenger decided not to sign Baptista permanently and he returned to Real Madrid. During his time in England Baptista showed that he had some qualities that suited the Premiership such as his physical approach, therefore maybe if he was given another season he could have fully adapted to the league. Now that Tottenham could be offering him a return to the Premier League, Baptista would be keen to prove he can cut it in England, after a stop start season at Roma.
However if Tottenham were to sign him would they be bringing him in specifically as a midfielder or a striker? If he is bought to play in midfield then they already have an abundance of options and with Tom Huddlestone, Luka Modric and Wilson Palacios all impressing in the centre last season Baptista would surely only be fourth choice there. Also Spurs have fellow Brazilian Sandro arriving from Internacional so for him to be a midfield acquisition wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense. If Baptista is signed as a striker then he probably wouldn’t do any better than what they’ve got already, therefore you have to ask yourself whether the Brazilian would be the type of player that would dramatically improve their squad better than it already is.
This season the players that Harry Redknapp chooses to sign could be crucial as they will look to try and qualify for the Champions League again. In my view Redknapp can’t really afford to take a risk on a player who although possesses some qualities, has continuted to be undone by a lack of consistency at most clubs he has been.
Would you like to see Baptista at White Hart Lane?