Transfer rumors always start as just that: Rumors. In the six years I’ve been covering this club, one thing I’ve learned is that rumors can change in an instant. They can also be stamped out almost immediately.
Yesterday, rumor broke late that Inter Milan had inquired about embattled Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Tanguy Ndombele. While the possible fee involved made a lot of Spurs supporters’ heads start to melt, the sourcing wasn’t bad. Today, one of Spurs’ beat writers, Dan Kilpatrick of The Standard, is here to throw some ice water on that growing rumor.
Inter are open to offering Ndombele an escape route from Spurs, while Barca remain keen on a part-exchange deal despite having already seen an approach rebuffed.
But, for now, Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is determined not to sell the maverick midfielder, who cost £55million from Lyon last July.
There is recognition from the Spurs hierarchy that Ndombele needs time to adapt, having endured an injury-hit maiden season in a new country, while struggling with the language and being away from his family. Levy, in particular, has faith in the 23-year-old and is set on giving him time to be a success.
Kilpatrick is acknowledging that Inter Milan have at least made an inquiry, so it seems Ed Aarons and Fabrizio Romano weren’t wrong yesterday. The difference in the reporting is that Kilpatrick says Levy isn’t interested in selling. The new information is that we have confirmation Barcelona have not only been sniffing around, but that rumor of a part-exchange deal involving possibly Nelson Semedo appears to have been true.
The good news here is that Levy is being typical Levy. He spent a lot of time and money to bring Tanguy Ndombele to north London and he’s not about to let him go for one season. This is the response I was personally hoping for and, I believe, most of the supporters were as well.
Ndombele had a rough first season at the club. The manager who recruited him was sacked in November and replaced with someone he has clashed with. Add in the injuries he dealt with and the stories of his lack of work ethic, it’s easy to see why he’s unsettled. As I said yesterday, whoever is at fault for this is basically irrelevant. The goal now is to get everyone on the same page so that Ndombele can come into the new season ready to play. This also sends a message to any of the clubs circling like vultures, hoping to pick a carcass clean and get a steal.
Silly Season is in full swing so don’t expect rumors like this to suddenly die, of course. It’s going to take the club and Ndombele coming out to say they’re ready to put last season’s roller coaster behind them and start anew. If that doesn’t happen, we can expect these rumors to pop up until October.