Tottenham Hotspur were one of the Premier League’s biggest spenders in the summer transfer window, with Fabio Paratici splashing a total of £152.91m on the likes of Richarlison, Yves Bissouma, Destiny Udogie and Djed Spence, as well as making Cristian Romero’s loan deal a £42.5m permanent move.
However, while Spurs’ incoming business will undoubtedly help Antonio Conte’s side compete both domestically and in the Champions League over the course of the 2022/23 campaign, it was one of the club’s outgoings that could arguably end up providing the club with the greatest long-term benefit.
Indeed, after highly impressing in Tottenham’s various youth sides – scoring 23 goals over 23 appearances for the U18s and bagging four in 14 for the U21s – Paratici sanctioned a deal that saw Dane Scarlett secure a season-long loan switch to League One side Portsmouth.
And, despite getting off to something of a slow start for Danny Cowley’s side – something that could be attributed to his first two appearances for the club coming from the bench – the centre-forward has since burst into life at Fratton Park.
Over his last five outings in all competitions, the £1.8m-rated centre-forward has scored four goals and registered one assist – with his latest showing in Pompey’s 2-1 victory over recently relegated Championship side Peterborough United particularly catching the eye.
Over the course of his 76 minutes on the pitch, the 18-year-old turned in a battling display, making two tackles, one interception, one clearance and winning five duels for his side, however, it was undoubtedly his finishing that most impressed on the day.
Indeed, after Peterborough took an early lead after some shambolic Portsmouth defending, Scarlett turned the game around for the home side single-handedly – bagging his first with a sensational diving header, before giving his side the lead with an excellent near post drive that completely wrong-footed Lucas Bergstrom between the Posh sticks.
The teenager’s efforts not only saw him earn a SofaScore match rating of 8.2 – the best of any player to feature in the match – but also saw the likes of Ryan Sessegnon and Marlon Pack label the striker a “star boy” and a “natural” on Instagram respectively.
As such, while the player who Jose Mourinho once dubbed a “diamond” will undoubtedly have to maintain this level of goalscoring form over the course of the 2022/23 campaign if he is to give himself a chance of becoming a regular for Conte further down the line, the early signs are extremely promising for Scarlett.
Indeed, should the England U19 talent go on to help catapult Pompey to promotion this season with a gluttony of goals, Paratici’s decision to loan the youngster out would very much appear to have been yet another masterstroke by the Italian sporting director.