That’s according to a report by Italian publication Quotidiano Nazionale (via Sport Witness), who claim that, after Fabio Paratici saw an opening £30m offer for the attacking midfielder rejected by AS Roma, the Italian sporting director is now preparing a fresh bid for the 23-year-old – while Juventus are also believed to be an interested party.
The report goes on to state that it is Antonio Conte who is personally pushing for the signing of the Italy international, with talks between the two clubs said to be ongoing regarding a deal for the former Inter Milan starlet – for whom Jose Mourinho’s side are said to be demanding €50m (£42.5m) in order to part with ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.
With it being reported that Tottenham’s next target in the summer transfer window will be that of a new attacking midfielder, it is not difficult to understand why Conte and Paratici appear so keen on a deal to bring Zaniolo to north London ahead of the new Premier League season.
Despite missing the best part of two years of first-team football as a result of two separate cruciate ligament ruptures, the 23-year-old proved in 2021/22 that he is now back on track to fulfil Paulo Fonseca’s 2019 prophecy that “he can become one of the best Italian players” in the not too distant future.
Indeed, the £34m-rated midfielder was one of Roma’s star players over his ten appearances in the club’s Europa Conference League triumph last season, scoring five goals – including the winner against Feyenoord in the final – providing four assists and creating three big chances, as well as taking an average of 2.0 shots, making 1.1 key passes and completing 0.8 dribbles per game.
These metrics saw the £76k-per-week talent who Nick Mercadante dubbed “unreal” average an extremely impressive SofaScore match rating of 7.11, ranking him as the Giallorossi’s sixth-best performer in the inaugural European tournament.
The incredibly versatile forward – who is capable of operating from central and attacking midfield, on either wing, as a support striker and up top – also impressed over his 28 Serie A appearances – 23 of which came as starts – last time out, scoring two goals and registering five assists for Mourinho’s side.
As such, with Zaniolo evidently being a player who is extremely creative, deadly in the final third and capable of being deployed in almost any attacking position on the pitch, it would very much appear as if the 23-year-old would be Conte’s dream seventh signing of the summer transfer window – leading us to believe that Paratici must do all he can to seal a deal for the Italian sensation in the coming weeks.