It’s fair to suggest that Tottenham Hotspur are finally enjoying life under Jose Mourinho after his controversial appointment over ten months ago.
The north Londoners find themselves inside the Premier League’s top six and in the Europa League group stages after a strenuous qualification run.
This summer has been a phenomenal transfer window with Daniel Levy bolstering the squad with six new additions, though that could still become seven should they manage to secure Joe Rodon from Swansea City by Friday’s domestic deadline.
Gareth Bale’s return has undoubtedly stolen the show, but perhaps there’s still one position that’s still lacking – that creative number ten.
Spurs have failed to replace Christian Eriksen, who swapped N17 for Milan in January.
Argentinian midfielder Giovani Lo Celso had been tipped to replace him but figures of four goals and three assists from 42 appearances, via Transfermarkt, is hardly much encouragement in living up to that tag.
Summer arrival Sergio Reguilon, the free-scoring Heung-min Son and leading talisman Harry Kane are all managing more key passes per game this season whilst Lo Celso is even behind Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg for expected assists.
Eriksen contributed to at least 19 Premier League goals across four different seasons for the club and only sunk below 2.2 key passes per match during his final season in which he started just ten times, so it’s clear to see that there’s still a major, major void at the club.
Spurs could have signed the perfect replacement too as they were once linked with interest in Portugal playmaker Bruno Fernandes, who is now one of Manchester United’s most important players.
The 26-year-old has recorded impressive statistics despite only arriving in England back in January – this term, he’s averaging 2.7 key passes each outing as well as an xG of 0.65 and xA of 0.29 per 90 this season.
Milan Skriniar, who Spurs tried to sign this window, lauded the Portuguese as one of his “best” teammates whilst Ole Gunnar Solskjaer soon hailed him as a “risk-taker” as well as having the “X factor”.
The “phenomenal” Fernandes has even impressed Roy Keane, who dubbed the maestro as a player with “pure quality.”
Aside from that 6-1 drubbing last time out, it’s hard to see how Spurs haven’t missed out time here.
He’s undoubtedly the one that got away.
AND in other news, Pochettino reject dubbed the new MESSI has thrived since his impulsive exit…