A move that could boost Tottenham's goal output from midfield while moving us a step closer to possessing all of the Ajax players.
A hard-working young Ajax captain with a high upside, yet not enough heat on him that we'd be forced into a costly bidding war for his signature? We've been here before, and it was awesome. Meet Siem de Jong, one possible and exciting answer to Tottenham's recent issues with firepower.
Name: Siem de Jong
League: Eredivisie (Netherlands)
Primary position: Attacking midfield
Can also play: Forward, wide attacking midfield
De Jong has only really hit his stride with the Ajax first team in the last few years, but he's moved to a centrally important role of late, with his career properly kickstarting with his title-deciding strikes against FC Twente in 2011. Recently, he's been impressing hugely during Ajax's 'group of death' Champions League campaign, capped with a stellar outing against Manchester City. He has captained the side since the departure of our own Jan Vertonghen, reflecting his significance as a creative outlet for Frank de Boer's side.
It would be tantamount to foolhardiness to argue that our current midfield is a weak one; however, one thing this side has slightly lacked from the middle of the park if anything that de Jong could bring to us is goals. Playing a fluid attacking mid/second striker role behind a main forward similar but distinct from what Rafa van der Vaart used to do for us, de Jong offers something a little different to what our existing crop of link men provide in terms of his attacking instincts and ability to come up with vital goals for the side (yes, even more so than Clint Dempsey). Indeed, he's talented and versatile enough that he could easily translate these skills into understudying as an out and out forward, as he has for spells with Ajax this year.
In terms of how he fits with the system, the notion of adding Siem de Jong to the side poses some interesting questions. Andre Villas-Boas hasn't been afraid to alternate between a 4-4-2 and a 4-2-3-1 so far this season, and de Jong could fit into either depending on what was required of him, even fitting into the advanced playmaker role if needed. However, his introduction in his favoured position behind the striker would require some degree of loosening up of the way Tottenham have played thusfar, allowing him to float between the lines of the defence in that ambiguous role he's made his own.
Likely price: €6.5-7m
Probability that valuation is wrong: It seems about right to me.
Team's willingness to sell: Ajax don't seem to have a problem with losing their captains, what with the endlessly regenerating supply of young talent in their Academy.
Fit at Tottenham Hotspur: Discuss. As stated, he certainly fulfils a need.
Possibility he ends up at Spurs: He's not really been linked to us by anyone and there's no burning need for someone of his ilk right now, so I'll opt for a 'not likely'.
Grade if this transfer goes through at likely price: B++