Tottenham Hotspur could look into signing Nicolas Gonzalez this summer, according to emerging reports…
Sky Sports reporter Lyall Thomas claims Spurs have been monitoring the 22-year-old forward for quite some time and could look to make a move when Gareth Bale returns to Real Madrid at the end of his season-long loan.
It’s thought that the Bundesliga outfit would want around €30m (£26m) for his signature. Gonzalez still has three years remaining on his current deal, which was only renewed in November.
Valued at £22.5m by Transfermarkt, the Argentine forward has been in fine form – when fit – providing six goals and two assists from only 15 appearances, including strikes against Champions League clubs in Dortmund and Gladbach.
That’s a direct goal contribution every 116 minutes.
And the glowing endorsement from his manager, Pellegrino Matarazzo, could hint towards why Jose Mourinho would be so keen on securing him this summer.
“He’s got a lot of qualities, but what I like best about him is that he’s a winner. He wants to win at all costs. He always gives 100%, and gets stuck in. He’s very important for us,” the American said to Bundesliga.com.
We know from Spurs’ mooted interest in RB Leipzig captain Marcel Sabitzer that the Spurs boss loves a competitor – transfer guru Fabrizio Romano told the Que Golazo CBS podcast: “He has quality but he’s a fighter, so he would be perfect for Jose Mourinho.”
The same would surely have to be said for Gonzalez, going by Matarazzo’s praise.
“He reminds me of Mario Kempes,” claimed the 22-year-old’s former coach, Alfredo Berti.
Those comparisons to the Argentina legend reinforce such a view, the 1978 World Cup and Golden Boot winner was a perfect mix of pace and power, often breaking through the defensively lines with brute force and acceleration.
Kempes, aged 30, once had a trial at Spurs in 1984, featuring in a 7-0 pre-season win over Enfield but was never signed permanently.
Gonzalez sits top for shots at Stuttgart, managing 4.43 attempts per 90 minutes, over one more effort than any other player and similarly, he ranks fourth for goal-creating actions (0.67 per 90), as per FBRef.
Likewise, he’s clear for touches in the opposition’s penalty box too, managing 7.21 per 90, and the combination of the above certainly suggests he’s able to break free to create chances – not just for himself, but for others too.
Mourinho would certainly love this sort of presence in attack, which is why Daniel Levy must open the chequebook this summer. Gonzalez and the ‘Special One’ could be a match made in heaven.
AND in other news, Spurs star dealt “significant” blow on international duty…