As I went to lunch today, my phone blew up with notifications. One of them was an aggregator saying that Tottenham Hotspur were “very, very busy” right now working on both incoming and outgoing moves in the transfer window. It’ll take me some time to get caught up, but here’s the biggest one from the past two hours: Fabrizio Romano (and others) are reporting that Tottenham and Porto are currently in negotiations for a January move for 25-year old Colombian wide attacker Luis Diaz.
Tottenham have submitted an official bid for Luis Díaz as reported by @pedromsepulveda today. FC Porto have not accepted yet. ⚪️ #THFC— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) January 25, 2022
Tottenham presented the official bid during a direct meeting in Portugal. Player dreams of Premier League but not easy deal between clubs.
Details about the bid are slowly emerging — supposedly Spurs offered somewhere around €45m for Diaz with an additional €10-15m in performance based escalators, but Diaz has a release clause of €80 and Porto are holding out for something around €60m. The negotiations apparently are taking place in person in Portugal — a very good sign as it means Spurs have already laid the groundwork for this offer to be made.
But let’s step back a second. Diaz is a 25 year old Colombian striker who has apparently made The Leap™ this season, his second with Porto. He’s another under the radar player — his FBRef stats chart doesn’t pop at all, but that’s because most of his output has come in his last 1500 minutes, during which he has absolutely exploded. Diaz currently has 16 goals and 6 assists in 24 starts in all competitions this season, a NPK G+A/90 rating of 1.44. Wind the clock back to this summer’s Copa America, and you can see where things started as he tied Lionel Messi for the Golden Boot with four goals. That’s... well, that’s real good, folks.
So that’s the good news. The (initial) bad news is that Porto has turned down Spurs’ current offer. Negotiations, however, are continuing, which means there’s still a chance for January, and possibly an even bigger chance this summer.
We know Antonio Conte wants to sign a new striker to play with (or instead of) Harry Kane. Spurs have been linked to a number of them over the past few months, and this looks like an attempt by Tottenham to get ahead of the curve here by signing a player who could hit the ground running and get even better. He’s not a pure striker, but his profile makes him look like a potential complement to Kane or Son Heung-Min — he could potentially play with both of them in a 4-3-3. He’s been highly regarded by watchers of Colombian football for years now, too.
But there are risks, of course. It’s a lot of (potential) money for a player who has only really broken out this season, and it’s not like Tottenham can afford another high profile and expensive flop. But that’s a risk Spurs are probably going to have to continue to take as they try and make up the gap between themselves and the likes of Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool, and Manchester United.
This one won’t be decided today, but this is evidence that Spurs are actually [pokes with stick] doing stuff. And it’s pretty exciting.