According to Daily Mail, Lazio sporting director Igli Tare has admitted that the future of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic is in the hands of the player himself. The midfielder is courted by Tottenham Hotspur among many other clubs across England.
Tare told Sky Sports Italia, “The player’s desire is crucial. Generally speaking, if a player thinks that their time is up and wants to go somewhere else, it shouldn’t be a problem.”
This could serve as a massive boost for Spurs, although the Lilywhites may have to fork out at least £80 million to sign him.
What can Sergej Milinkovic-Savic provide to the table?
Milinkovic-Savic is often referred to as the midfield general because of his all-round qualities and leadership in the middle third of the pitch. Standing at 1.91m, the Serbian boasts a massive 1.91m frame that makes him an intimidating presence in midfield. It also hands him a considerable advantage when it comes to physical and aerial duels.
Also, the 25-year-old is an excellent ball carrier, notably averaging 1.2 successful dribbles per game. His ability to move forward makes him quite similar to someone like Abdoulaye Doucoure. In fact, Milinkovic-Savic has averaged 1.2 key passes per game this season, which is quite impressive for a central midfielder.
However, what makes the Serbian such an appealing target for Tottenham Hotspur is his experience at the highest level of football. He has already made almost 200 competitive appearances for Lazio while winning 15 caps for Serbia. It will surely help him to get integrated into any league in the world.
How does he fit in at Spurs?
Sergej Milinkovic-Savic will be an ideal addition to the Tottenham Hotspur midfield. His aggression and tenacity make him a tailor-made fit for Jose Mourinho’s pragmatic style of play that focuses on denying the opposition from making the transition from defence to midfield.
This means the Lazio star can be utilised in the second line of the press, alongside an equally hard-working individual like Harry Winks. The presence of players like him, Winks and Gedson will surely add more quality and revamp Tottenham’s holding midfield slot, which is essential for any top club.
It seems Mourinho could most likely deploy Milinkovic-Savic and Winks in the double-pivot of a 4-2-3-1 with Son Heung-Min, Giovani Lo Celso(or Dele Alli) and Steven Bergwijn operating in the final third. It will add more balance to the side, especially with the Serbian having the ability to march forward with the ball.
At the same time, however, an astounding asking fee of £80 million is perhaps a bit too much, even for a player of Milinkovic-Savic’s calibre. So the Lilywhites may have to set their sights on other alternatives this summer.
Stat courtesy: Whoscored