Tottenham Hotspur are set to take on José Mourinho’s old side, Manchester United, tomorrow evening at Old Trafford. While the club make final preparations for that match, some news came out about Spurs loanee Giovani Lo Celso and the deal that brought him to north London.
According to Estadio Deportivo (via Sport Witness), Real Betis CEO José Miguel López Catalán has confirmed the clauses that the Spanish side agreed to. Let’s just say that Daniel Levy out-did himself on this one:
“The purchase option [for Lo Celso] can be exercised in the January market and they would have to pay 32 million,” José Miguel López Catalán was quoted as saying by ABC Sevilla.
“In June it is mandatory, if they get into the Champions League, and if not they will have an option. They will have to make the decision on whether to buy him or not.”
Catalán is speaking in terms of Euros when it comes to the price tag, so here’s an easier breakdown of how this has played out:
The initial loan fee that Spurs paid Real Betis was £13.7m. At the time, it was reportedly an obligation to buy the following summer for £35.3m. The trigger on that is if Spurs qualify for the UEFA Champions League in the 2020/21 season. If Spurs fail to qualify, that amount doesn’t change but it’s no longer an obligation to buy. Spurs can exercise the option or send him back to Spain.
The beauty of this deal is that Levy agreed to a discounted option in January at just £27.5m. That is obviously not an obligation but it would save the club around £8m if Tottenham planned on keeping him anyway.
With the news coming out today that Christian Eriksen is all but out the door, Mourinho may be ready to move to Lo Celso now that he knows Eriksen isn’t sticking around. There has been some minor concern over the past couple of weeks that Mourinho doesn’t rate the 23-year-old Argentine midfielder, but those reports are far too early. Yes, this was a deal that Mauricio Pochettino pushed hard for. We know what he’s capable of and it’s going to be his time to shine soon enough, especially with the insanely busy schedule Spurs are looking at.
As for this deal, Levy absolutely crushed it. Betis were looking to cash in as much as possible on this deal and may end up with just a few million Euros in the end. I would be stunned if the club didn’t opt to make the deal permanent next month. There will still be detractors who will say that waiting until deadline day is not the way, but we should be used to it by now. Levy does it for a reason, and if Spurs end up getting one of the best young midfielders in the world for £41m in the current market? That’s worth the wait.
Now we just need to see him play on a regular basis.