Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Tottenham Hotspur Unwilling To Pay €35 Million For Defensive Star: Why Mourinho Must Go For It

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Jack O’Brien
A 22 y/o football nerd seeking my way into football writing. I love Irish football and also the Premier League. A huge Arsenal fan! Aside from writing, I like to spend my time fishing and drinking beer.

According to Record, as cited by Sport Witness, Tottenham Hotspur are among the clubs interested in the services of Alejandro Grimaldo. The Lilywhites are joined by Napoli in the chase to sign the SL Benfica fullback. However, it also states that no club is willing to meet Grimaldo’s €35 million valuation.

Why is Grimaldo a highly-rated talent?

A former member of La Masia youth academy in Barcelona, Grimaldo is among the under radar talents, who is punching above his weight in the Portuguese first division.

The defender initially joined Benfica in the summer of 2016, eventually breaking out in the following year, notably making 28 appearances in the league. During his ongoing four year spell with the Eagles, Grimaldo has made over 150 competitive appearances for the club.

A left-back by trade, the Spaniard is primarily known for his technical prowess, as you would expect from any La Masia graduate. He can effortlessly rotate possession, attaining a pass completion rate of 82% this season.

However, what really makes him such a unique component in the Benfica backline is his ability to create chances. Grimaldo can march forward and provide crosses from the wider areas of the pitch. Additionally, he can also drift inside and link-up with teammates, creating passing triangles.

As a result, the Spaniard has averaged an incredible 2.2 key passes per game this season. It is quite impressive for a left-back, who has also attempted four tackles per game, thus indicating his tenacity and willingness to close down the opposition.

Joao Cancelo (L) of Juventus fights for the ball with Alejandro Grimaldo of Benfica during their 2018 International Champions Cup at the Red Bull Arena on July 28, 2018, in Harrison, New Jersey. (Photo by EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ / AFP via Getty Images)

Why Tottenham must make a move for Grimaldo

Tottenham Hotspur are in complete disarray at the moment, especially in the fullback department. Ben Davies has not been able to return to form after recovering from his injury. And with him being the only left-back option, manager Jose Mourinho has been forced to utilise the inexperienced Japhet Tanganga in the same slot.

Therefore, the Lilywhites must invest in a new left-back this summer if they are to fix one of their several defensive issues. Grimaldo, in that regard, makes perfect sense.

The Benfica star is capable of adding a more technical element to the Spurs backline. His ability to carry the ball out from the back will improve the club’s overall transition, which is an essential part of Mourinho’s style of play. Grimaldo can also provide a creative essence in the final third, which will be useful following the departure of Christian Eriksen.

It can be argued that splashing €35 million in the market will be a risk, especially after the Coronavirus pandemic. Still, it’s a risk Mourinho should take if he is to usher in a new era in north London.

Stat courtesy: Whoscored

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