Why Nikola Maksimovic would be a smart signing for Tottenham
Back in March 2016, a report from the Express had claimed Tottenham were one of the Premier League clubs interested in Nikola Maksimovic, who was then plying his trade for Torino. However, the defender ended up joining Napoli in August 2016.
Nikola Maksimovic, 27, has played 48 games in all competitions since arriving at Napoli, playing in different positions across the backline.
The Serbian spent the second half of the 2017/18 on loan at Spartak Moscow where he managed nine league appearances. The defender has played four league games this season, although he’s currently out with a minor muscle injury.
With Maksimovic impressing at Stadio San Paulo with consistent performances under Carlo Ancelotti, Tottenham should rekindle their interest during the January transfer window.
Tottenham should be on the lookout for defensive reinforcements after a really poor start to 2019/20.
The Lilywhites have conceded 12 goals in eight games, leaking three in the defeat to Brighton before the international break. Mauricio Pochettino needs to sort out his team’s defensive problems if the club is to enjoy a successful season.
Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen—two pillars of Tottenham’s backline—have both struggled over the early weeks of the season, with the duo looking out of sorts.
The Belgian pair were run ragged by Brighton forward Aaron Connolly during Tottenham’s last match, as Pochettino’s side were handed a thumping 3-0 defeat.
Both Alderweireld and Vertonghen are out of contract at the end of the season, and question marks have been raised over their commitment. Meanwhile, Davinson Sanchez and Juan Foyth need some more time to become a regular fixture as they are still very young.
To put things into perspective, Tottenham must sign a new centre-back in the next transfer window and Nikola Maksimovic could be a good addition. Athletic and powerful, Maksimovic is predominantly a centre-half but he is more than capable of playing at right-back and in a holding role.
He is a ball-playing defender, who never hesitates to come off his line with the ball and make a quick pass to one of his teammates.
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The Serbian international is a composed passer of the ball and his 6ft 4in frame ideally gives him an advantage against his opponents in aerial duels. A rock-solid defender having perhaps hit his prime, Maksimovic has the technical abilities and physicality to thrive in the Premier League.
A January move to Tottenham would give Maksimovic time to settle in the Premier League before the summer when Alderweireld will apparently move on and the Serbian could slot in as his replacement.