Tottenham Hotspur’s reported transfer target Leonardo Bonucci would “definitely improve” Antonio Conte’s defence.
That’s according to Pete O’Rourke, who stated his belief in a recent interview with Football FanCast that, following reports claiming that Spurs are interested in a move for the Juventus centre-back in the January transfer window, the 35-year-old would be an improvement upon Conte’s current options at the back – despite the defender’s advancing years.
Regarding Tottenham’s potential signing of the Italy international, the journalist said: “Bonucci is a world-class player. Maybe he’s coming to the end of his career but he’s still a classy operator.
“He’s got a whole wealth of experience at club and international level as well and I’m sure, even if it was a short-term signing, he’d be somebody who would definitely improve that Spurs defence.”
While it is undeniable that, at 35, Bonucci is coming towards the end of his career at the very top level of the professional game, it is nevertheless easy to see why O’Rourke believes that the centre-back would be a world-class signing for Conte to bring to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this winter.
Indeed, despite his advancing years, the £13m-rated Italian was in fantastic defensive form over his 24 Serie A appearances last time out, helping his side keep four clean sheets, as well as making an average of 1.1 interceptions, 0.6 tackles, 3.4 clearances and winning 2.9 duels – at a success rate of 54% – per game.
The centre-back also chipped in for Juve in an attacking capacity, scoring a hugely impressive five goals and registering one assist, in addition to taking an average of 0.7 shots, making 0.5 key passes and playing 6.3 long balls per fixture, returns which are rather remarkable for a centre-back.
These numbers saw the 118-cap international average an extremely impressive SofaScore match rating of 7.08, ranking him as Massimiliano Allegri’s joint fourth-best performer in the top flight of Italian football in 2021/22.
Furthermore, with Bonucci having won nine Serie A titles, four Coppa Italia titles, five Supercoppa Italiana titles and one European Championship over the course of his club and international career, it is clear that the £200k-per-week talent is a proven winner – something that Tottenham’s squad is very much lacking at present.
As such, it is easy to see why O’Rourke believes that the Italian titan would represent an improvement upon Conte’s current options at the back, as despite being in the twilight of his career, the 35-year-old is still quite clearly one of the best and most experienced central defenders currently playing the game.