Tottenham Hotspur remain interested in Nicolo Zaniolo with sporting director Fabio Paratici eyeing up a swoop this summer…
Calciomercato.it have once again linked Spurs with interest in the AS Roma midfielder but they face competition from Serie A rivals Juventus and AC Milan, as well as from Atletico Madrid and Sevilla.
It’s believed that the Rome outfit are looking for a fee in the region of €60m (£50m) to €70m (£58m) but they are said to be more likely to receive between €40m (£33m) to €50m (£41.5m).
It also remains to be seen whether manager Jose Mourinho would accept a sale or push for the board to try and renew the 22-year-old’s contract.
Lilywhites manager Antonio Conte recently hinted of his intentions to sign a new no.10-like player during the off-season to help the likes of Harry Kane, Heung-min Son and Dejan Kulusevski, so it’s no surprise to see the north Londoners mooted with a move for Zaniolo.
You’d have to then wonder what the future holds for Tanguy Ndombele – Spurs’ disappointing £55m club-record signing – as he is currently on loan to former club Lyon.
During his time at Hotspur Way, the Frenchman has been lambasted as being “very lazy” and as having a “bad attitude” by pundit Alan Hutton, as well as “disgraceful” by Sky Sports man Jamie Carragher last season.
Meanwhile, despite persistent injury troubles, the Italy international remains one of the hottest prospects in his age bracket with Transfermarkt valuing him at £29.7m, which was higher than Kulusevski, 21, at the time of his departure from Juventus this winter.
The versatile attacking midfielder, who can also play on the wing, has featured in 36 matches this term, where he has delivered seven goals and eight assists, including a recent hat-trick in their Europa Conference League quarter-final win over Bodo/Glimt.
In terms of attacking output, Zaniolo is only tracking 0.1 shots per game behind top goalscorer Tammy Abraham at the Stadio Olimpico, whilst he leads the squad for dribbles (2.2 successive attempts per outing), as per WhoScored.
His ability and form in the Italian capital once caught the eye of legendary Roma striker Francesco Totti, who lauded the young maestro as “explosive” before also suggesting that he “plays like a veteran,” via the BBC.
Some have even likened him to Premier League greats Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard, suggesting that he’s a more box-to-box beast that can contribute in the opposition’s penalty box, too.
As such, any Zaniolo arrival could finally force Ndombele out of the exit door at long last – at least, Conte would then have a valid reason to cash in on Spurs’ club-record disaster.
Paratici and co must look to sign the Italian this off-season.
AND in other news, Spurs “keeping tabs” on PL star that would excite the Lilywhites faithful…