Southampton Ace Reacts To Tottenham Hotspur Links: Should Mourinho Go Ahead With The Move?

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg of Southampton in action during the UEFA Europa League Group K match between Southampton FC and FC Internazionale Milano at St Mary's Stadium on November 3, 2016 in Southampton, England. (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

During an interview with BT, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has acknowledged Tottenham Hotspur’s interest. Despite remaining coy on his future, the midfielder has hailed Spurs as a big club, claiming that his teammate Christian Eriksen has garnered good experience playing for the north London giants. This could serve as a potential boost to Jose Mourinho, in his reported pursuit of Hojbjerg this summer.

Tottenham’s woes in midfield

Tottenham Hotspur could potentially undergo a complete overhaul in the midfield department after the end of the ongoing season as the club looks to recover from a dire campaign. Last summer’s marquee signing Tanguy Ndombele has already been linked with a move away from north London, with Barcelona reportedly interested.

Additionally, Oliver Skipp has failed to win the trust of Mourinho while Moussa Sissoko has struggled with injuries. That leaves Spurs with only two viable options in central midfield in Harry Winks and Gedson Fernandes, with the latter enduring a difficult start to his Premier League career.

Winks has been an ever-present figure in the Tottenham midfield, but, the English international has appeared inconsistent, especially against top teams. And with Eric Dier also struggling, Spurs need massive reform in the middle third of the pitch this summer.

Is Hojbjerg a viable target?

Hojbjerg may not be the flashiest of midfielders in the Premier League or even in the Southampton team. But, his hard-working nature, combined with his aggression, has already impressed Ralph Hasenhuttl. The ex-Bayern Munich starlet could definitely thrive under Mourinho, who prefers a more defence-oriented approach, just like the Southampton boss.

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg of Southampton battles for possession with Harry Winks of Tottenham Hotspur during the FA Cup Fourth Round match between Southampton FC and Tottenham Hotspur at St. Mary’s Stadium on January 25, 2020, in Southampton, England. (Photo by Dan Istitene/Getty Images)

Aside from tactical compatibility, Hojbjerg can also offer experience and leadership, having made 129 competitive appearances for the Saints. He is, therefore, a viable and cost-effective option for Tottenham as they look to bolster their midfield options this summer.

Where does Hojbjerg fit in at Spurs?

Assuming Winks would remain the first-choice central midfielder for Tottenham next season, Hojbjerg would likely be considered as an alternative for the Englishman. Both these players are uniquely similar, meaning it will provide Mourinho with very little tactical dimension in midfield.

In that sense, the Portuguese mastermind would welcome the arrival of a more attack-minded midfielder. Someone like Ivan Rakitic or Mario Gotze, for example, could thrive at Spurs.

Alternatively, Mourinho can also take the defensive route by deploying Gedson alongside Winks or Hojbjerg in the double-pivot of a 4-2-3-1 formation. However, one thing is for sure – the Dane will not be considered as a first-team regular for the Lilywhites, in the event of his potential arrival at the club.

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.