Let’s face it, Italian clubs are usually skint. No matter who they are, what they’ve won and who they’re owned by, they love a deal that doesn’t involve a fixed transfer fee (or better, a swap deal disguised as an unrelated purchase and sale that puts money on the books, see: Arthur/Pjanic).
With Daniel Levy equally as keen to keep the budget tight where possible at Spurs, a deal between themselves and Inter could either be a match made in heaven. Or a complete disaster.
With Antonio Conte’s Inter are beginning to look like one of Europe’s most dangerous sides, pushing Juventus closer than ever in this season’s race for the Serie A, a move for Spurs’ record signing – and, more recently, outcast – Tanguy Ndombele could be the final piece of the jigsaw.
Ndombele only signed for the last summer in a club-record £62m deal, but the chances of him leaving after just one season are high, with Jose Mourinho replacing Mauricio Pochettino mid-season and…not overly keen on the midfielder.
Inter have a wealth of talent themselves that Spurs could poach in return. Such as…
It wouldn’t be a Jose Mourinho team if he didn’t try to improve the defence somehow. Skriniar would no doubt bolster Tottenham’s options at the back, and prove an ideal replacement – upgrade, even – for the outgoing Jan Vertonghen.
Skriniar allows them to shift to a back three if necessary, too, and would likely put Toby Alderweireld in a fight to keep his place in a side. A solid addition.
Spurs fans are borderline desperate for a new starting right-back, and they could do with some extra legs in their ranks.
They’ve been linked with a move for young Max Aarons, but with the way Ryan Sessegnon’s career has gone in north London as a young full-back, he might be inclined to head elsewhere. D’Ambrosio, at 31, is an experienced head and again an ideal Mourinho signing, who would offer quality in rotation.
Of course there would be money involved here, too. There’s no way Levy swaps a 23-year-old record signing for a 31-year-old full-back.
Reports suggested that Spurs had a longstanding interest in Roma’s Nicolo Zaniolo, but look set to miss out as I Giallorossi have no intentions to sell.
If Ndombele was to leave, another midfielder would need to come in. Barella is only 23 and an energetic presence in the centre of the park. He’d run his socks off in a Mourinho side and would get stuck in with the physicality of the Premier League, while also being able to set through Spurs’ forwards with long balls.
Barella has only just joined the club permanently though, meaning the deal would be a difficult one to pull off.
Mourinho tends to build teams with players at their peak rather than developing younger talents, and Marcelo Brozovic could be the ideal candidate.
At 27, he’s more experienced than Ndombele and Barella, and would support the younger duo of Gedson Fernandes (yeah, remember him?) and Giovani Lo Celso.
Brozovic would provide Tottenham with creativity from deep, going forward and taking on a long-range shot or creating a chance for others. With the age difference, however, perhaps Spurs could demand a little bit of cash alongside him for Ndombele’s services.