That’s according to a report by Spanish publication AS, who claim that, after Fabio Paratici was given the green light by Barcelona to make a move for the centre-forward during the Italian’s negotiations for Clement Lenglet, the sporting director has now moved a step closer to signing him after informing the LaLiga side he is willing to pay €17m (£14.5m) for the 28-year-old – a figure just €3m (£2.5m) short of Barca’s €20m (£17.5m) asking price.
The report goes on to state that, while the Netherlands international would prefer to remain at the Camp Nou beyond the summer, he is willing to leave the club in the search of regular first-team football with a top European side – with it being said that a move to Sevilla does not interest him, while a number of interested Italian sides are not believed to be able to meet Barcelona’s demands for the striker.
Considering just how impressive Depay was for Barcelona last season, in addition to the centre-forward currently possessing a market valuation of around £34m, should Paratici manage to seal a £14.5m deal for the 28-year-old as Tottenham’s seventh signing of the summer, it would undoubtedly represent an unbelievable coup for Antonio Conte’s side.
Indeed, over his 28 LaLiga appearances in 2021/22, the £158k-per-week talent was in scintillating form, scoring 12 goals, providing two assists and creating five big chances for his teammates, in addition to taking an average of 2.2 shots, making 1.6 key passes and completing 1.6 dribbles per game.
These returns saw former Olympique Lyon forward who Liam Canning dubbed “unreal” average a quite remarkable SofaScore match rating of 7.26, not only ranking him as Xavi’s fourth-best performer in the league but also as the joint 10th-best player in the Spanish top flight as a whole.
Furthermore, according to FBref, the Dutchman also ranks in the top 1% of forwards in Europe’s big five leagues for passes attempted per 90, as well as the top 3% for progressive carries, the top 3% for progressive passes received, the top 6% for shot-creating actions, the top 6% for progressive passes and the top 8% for dribbles completed over the past 12 months.
As such, while it is true that Paratici has already added the £60m Richarlison to Conte’s attacking options in north London this summer, should the Italian be able to add the further addition of Depay to Spurs’ squad ahead of the 2022/23 campaign, the argument that Tottenham will be serious contenders for the Premier League title next season would become much easier to make.