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Reports: Tottenham close to surprise signing of Steven Bergwijn

All Ijn on Bergwijn!

NAC Breda v PSV - Dutch KNVB Beker Photo by Photo Prestige/Soccrates/Getty Images

It’s a slow Sunday morning with nothing but FA Cup on the football internets, but there’s a potentially very exciting Tottenham Hotspur transfer rumor that’s emerging. According to De Telegraaf in the Netherlands, a familiar name has re-emerged as a potential transfer target in what remains of the January transfer windowPSV Eindhoven attacker Steven Bergwijn.

The article isn’t long, but it states that Bergwijn has been held out of PSV’s match today against FC Twente, ostensibly because Mourinho likes him and because of a potential transfer to Tottenham Hotspur. And there’s more — another Dutch paper, Eindhoven Dagblad, the local paper of PSV, also states that Bergwijn wants to go to Spurs, hence the omission, though there’s no indication that an agreement has been reached between the clubs for his transfer.

Spurs were kicking the tires on Bergwijn last summer but the interest didn’t seem to be that concrete under Mauricio Pochettino. Bergwijn isn’t a striker — he mostly operates as a left sided attacking midfielder — but he can play up top if needed and is a wonderful creator. So far this season in the Eredivisie he has five goals and 10 assists in just over 1300 minutes of league play. His stats on WhoScored have him at roughly 5 shots + shot assists per 90 minutes, plus 3 completed dribbles per 90 which is pretty impressive, with the caveat that it is the Dutch league. Statsbomb says he has “near elite touch with his passing in the final third” which is high praise.

Here are his advanced statistics from the 2018-19 season, courtesy of Michael Caley:

  • 0.72 xG+xA90 (6th in Eredivisie)
  • 0.76 G+A90 (4th)
  • 3.2 drib90 (3rd)
  • 82% pass completion as a forward
  • 2.7 penalty area entries (6th)
  • 5.8 progressive passes + runs / 90 (5th)

Purchasing Bergwijn would be less an actual backup striker purchase and more of an upgrade on someone like Erik Lamela, or a means of lessening the offensive creative load on Son Heung-Min. Plus, Bergwijn’s only 22, so this puts him right in the sweet spot of a potential Tottenham Hotspur emerging star. He’s not the striker a lot of Tottenham players want, but he’s young, exciting, dynamic, and has near elite creation statistics in the box. He would DEFINITELY make Spurs a better team going forward.

Bergwijn just signed a contract extension through 2023 this offseason, and there’s no indication on how much he would cost, but if this is accurate this would be a pretty exciting signing. When I started this article, it was a quick 150 word piece on a silly transfer rumor and it has quickly turned into something that has made both me and my Carty Free masthead colleagues incredibly happy.

This would be super exciting. I’m All Ijn on Bergwijn.

Update (10:20 AM ET): Sky Sports is reporting “an approach” from Spurs to PSV for Bergwijn. I’m getting extremely Son-Heung-Min-to-Spurs transfer vibes here.