Why Eric Dier-Franck Kessie swap deal would be excellent for Spurs
According to claims from Italian outlet Calciomercato, Serie A giants AC Milan are keen to bring Tottenham Hotspur’s Eric Dier to the San Siro in January as a part of a swap deal which would involve Franck Kessie heading the other way to North London.
The same report claims that new Rossoneri boss Stefano Pioli, who recently took over the reins from Marco Giampaolo, is a big fan of Eric Dier and believes the Englishman could be a wonderful addition to the club’s midfield ranks.
Pioli, though, doesn’t rate Kessie too highly (h/t Calciomercato) and Milan are already plotting a swap deal to replace the Ivorian with Dier, who has found himself in and out of the first-team fold at Spurs over the past twelve months due to injuries and illness.
Kessie had been linked heavily with a move to the Premier League during the summer transfer window, with Arsenal, Spurs, West Ham and Wolves all vying for the Ivorian’s signature. Despite widespread interest from several English clubs, noting came to fruition and the 22-year-old stayed put in Italy. (h/t Daily Express)
The Lilywhites eventually turned their attention to other targets in the market and ended up striking a club-record deal for French midfielder Tanguy Ndombele, while Giovani Lo Celso was also brought in on loan from Real Betis to provide Mauricio Pochettino with some added cover and quality in the middle of the park.
To that end, though, the fans have every reason to be bitterly disappointed with how things have panned out for their team thus far, with Spurs currently sitting 9th in the standings after an unexpectedly poor start to the campaign.
With the new recruits yet to make a big impact, the Lilywhites have largely looked like a listless and disjointed side with little or no motivation to rally them on and Pochettino clearly has his work cut out if he is to guide the club to a top-four finish in the Premier League this term.
To that end, Spurs definitely need to plan for another mini squad overhaul in January, with question marks lingering over the futures of several first-team stars, including the likes of Toby Alderweireld and Christian Eriksen, who are out of contract next summer.
Spurs definitely need to bring in some serious reinforcements to cope with the potential departure of two of their most influential players but, besides that, they should also make it a priority to freshen up things by getting rid of a few of their underperforming stars in January.
Eric Dier is certainly one of those players that Spurs just cannot afford to keep on their books any longer.
As well as his obvious limitations as a defensive midfielder stemming from his lack of pace, agility, sharpness and poor reading of the game, the 25-year-old England international has struggled with injuries since the start of the previous campaign and has slipped down the pecking order in North London following the arrival of Ndombele.
To put things into perspective, swap deals are a rarity in football but Tottenham should be delighted if this one comes off, as it would allow them to cash in on the underwhelming Eric Dier and land Frack Kessie, who is a much better all-round central midfielder as compared to the Englishman.
Kessie has carved out a huge reputation for himself as one of the best up and coming midfield enforcers in Italy over the course of his stay at AC Milan.
The 22-year-old initially moved to the San Siro in 2017 on a two-year loan agreement from Atalanta but the Rossoneri took up the option to sign him permanently and he has so far proven himself to be an incredible player.
The Ivorian not only has a lot more pace and agility as compared to Dier, which enables him to cope effectively with the transitions in play, but he also boasts of high levels of stamina, drive and determination, attributes which make him a powerful and commanding presence in the middle of the park.
Adept at breaking up the play and carrying the ball forward with pace and intent, Kessie is an excellent dribbler for a player who is not a natural attacker by trade.
Solid in defence, the Ivorian also has that innate ability to create space for himself with his nimble footwork and link up the play further up the pitch, something that Dier lacks in his game.
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Add to that his eye for key passes and ability to get into the box to score goals and it is not difficult to see why Frank Kessie could be a massive upgrade on Eric Dier at Tottenham.
That said, this is a deal that could potentially work wonders for the Lilywhites moving forward and a midfield cavalry of Moussa Sissoko, Franck Kessie, Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso is something that the fans should be looking forward to.