Five Spurs targets after Saints scout joins Pochettino in London
With Southampton’s player recruitment chief Paul Mitchell joining Tottenham to be reunited with Mauricio Pochettino, it could spark an influx of signings over the next two transfer windows, who could prove to be revelations.
Mitchell moved to Southampton in January 2012, and has been credited for the signings of Nathaniel Clyne, Dejan Lovren, Jay Rodriguez and Victor Wanyama, It’s this season, however, where his recruitment has really paid dividends in getting Dusan Tadic, Graziano Pelle, Sadio Mane, Toby Alderweireld, Fraser Forster, Ryan Bertrand and Shane Long.
With this in mind, Coral review five potential targets who could be identified by Mitchell while at Spurs (13/2 with Coral for a top four finish), with the winter window fast approaching.
Having singed Rodriguez from Burnley for Southampton, Ings appears to be in a similar mould. The 22-year-old striker is free to sign a pre-contract agreement in January, with his current deal set to run out next summer. With Spurs in need of forward options, the England Under-21 international could prove to be a canny cut-price purchase.
This Roma-owned player was linked with Arsenal in 2013, though now on loan at Bayer Leverkusen, 19-year-old Croatia defender Jedvaj has plenty of potential to cut it in the Premier League. Mitchell has unearthed youngsters before, and was responsible for bringing his compatriot Lovren to St Mary’s.
A natural successor to former Spurs star Luka Modric in the heart of midfield, the 23-year-old is known in the Netherlands as the “Dutch Xavi”. Mitchell did business with Clasie’s current club Feyenoord to bring Pelle to Southampton this summer, and shouldn’t find it too difficult to re-establish his relationship, if this player comes under his radar. Spurs would also benefit from someone of his ability and potential, and in time he could boss their midfield.
The Valencia right back joined Liverpool when he was 18, and made just one appearance before being sold to Deportivo La Corunna a year later. Now 27, he has developed into a very solid right back, who is strong in the tackle and has a penchant for crossing. It would be interesting whether he catches the eye of Mitchell, though any move to north London, would allow promising summer signing Eric Dier to move inside and play at centre back.
Spurs’ apparent lack of a natural left winger, could see them identify one in January. Although Christian Eriksen has been used there to fill a gap at times this season, his best role is behind the striker. Fernandes was Udinese’s best outfield player last term, showing he is most dangerous ghosting into the penalty area and wreaking havoc. Spurs haven’t had this kind of threat since Gareth Bale, and a move for the 20-year-old Portugal man could turn out to be a masterstroke.