This article is part of Football FanCast’s In Numbers series, which takes a statistical look at performances, season-long form and reported transfer targets…
Tottenham Hotspur are closing in on a deal to sign Giovani Lo Celso, per reports.
The Daily Mirror claims that Spurs could announce the transfer of the Real Betis star this week after spending between £54m and £60m on the attacking midfielder.
The Argentine is said to be pushing to join the club as he is keen to work under Mauricio Pochettino, but what exactly will Spurs be getting?
Lo Celso enjoyed a terrific season in La Liga in 2018/19, scoring nine goals and registering four assists domestically, per WhoScored.
He laid on 0.8 key passes-per-game, suggesting that he has the ability to split a defence open at least once every two games; surely good news for Harry Kane, the top finisher in north London.
Lo Celso also averaged two dribbles-per-game, proving that he is willing to carry the ball as well as pick out his team-mates, though his pass success rate of 82.9% may need slight improvement at Spurs.
He is clearly a player who looks to pick the lock while being willing to shoot and his traits lend him to a team like Spurs.
They averaged 56.7% possession in 2018/19, per WhoScored, the fourth highest in the league, and Lo Celso could actually help to improve that number.
Indeed, Betis, surprisingly, averaged the second-highest possession statistic in La Liga last season, with 59.4%, only behind Barcelona.
Lo Celso is used to playing in a team that dominates the ball, then, while Betis also averaged a pass completion rate of 86.7% to Spurs’ 83.2%.
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A move to the Premier League will see the playmaker come up against higher-pressing teams, of course, and he is also likely to have less time on the ball.
But his numbers are favourable and he fits the profile Spurs are looking for, particularly having played for a similar statistical side already in his career.
He could be a truly excellent signing.