Tottenham Hotspur are set to be offered the services of Joao Palhinha this summer.
That’s according to a claim made by Jacque Talbot, with the journalist revealing in a recent post on Twitter that, after coming to an agreement with Jorge Mendes, the Sporting Lisbon midfielder will force a move away from Portugal this summer, with Manchester United, Newcastle United, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Spurs believed to be in the running for the 26-year-old.
Talbot goes on to suggest that Wolves appear to be the most likely destination for the Portugal international, however, Mendes’ good relationship with Fabio Paratici could see Antonio Conte’s side handed an advantage in their pursuit of the midfielder.
In his tweet, the journalist said: “Sporting Lisbon’s Joao Palhinha will be offered to Man United, Spurs, Newcastle, but other Premier League clubs in the running/more likely. Agreement in place with Mendes to forge a move. Wolves the most likely, I’m told, but of course, Mendes does have a good relationship with Tottenham’s MD Fabio Paratici.”
Considering just how impressive Palhinha has been for Sporting so far this season, in addition to the fact that both Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele’s long-term futures in north London look to be rather uncertain, the argument that the 26-year-old would make an excellent addition to Conte’s current options in the middle of the park is an easy one to make.
Indeed, over his 19 Liga Portugal Bwin appearances in the current campaign, the £23.4m-rated talent has been in imperious form for Ruben Amorim’s side, scoring three goals and creating one big chance for his teammates, as well as taking an average of 1.2 shots and making 0.4 key passes per game.
The £24k-per-week defensively-minded midfielder has also impressed in metrics more typical of his position, with his 32.42 pressures per 90 ranking him in the top 1% of midfielders in Europe’s big five leagues, while his 3.04 tackles per game also see him rank in the top 14% out of the same group of players.
These returns have seen the player who Amorim dubbed a “special” talent average a quite astonishing SofaScore match rating of 7.19, ranking him as the joint 22nd-best player in the top flight of Portuguese football.
As such, the news that a player as talented as Palhinha looks as if he will be offered to Spurs this summer is sure to have left Conte buzzing, as the 26-year-old midfield maestro would very much look to be the type of player the 52-year-old Italian would love in the heart of his Tottenham side.