Tottenham Hotspur are just one of several clubs that have recently been linked with Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, a player likely to be in demand this summer.
Now, Lazio sporting director Igli Tare has dropped a hint over the Serbia international’s future, claiming it “shouldn’t be a problem” for him to leave, and that “things must be assessed at the end of the season”.
Milinkovic-Savic continues to go from strength to strength for the Biancocelesti and, this season, has helped them go toe to toe with Juventus in the quest for a first Serie A title since 2000.
(Photo by Danilo Di Giovanni/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
The 25-year-old has clocked up 194 competitive senior appearances for Lazio, registering 36 goals and 26 assists in all competitions, and has several trophy wins on his CV including a Coppa Italia and three Italian Supercups.
According to the Daily Mail, Jose Mourinho saw the young Serb as a potential replacement for Paul Pogba when he was in charge at Manchester United and has “made it clear” he would like to bring him to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
“The player’s desire is crucial,” Tare told Sky Italia, as quoted by Football Italia. “Generally speaking, if a player thinks that their time is up and wants to go somewhere else, it shouldn’t be a problem.
“Eras come to an end. The fact he stayed in Rome for five years is because he has strong links with the city and club. When there was some temptation, a bit on our part, a bit on his, we never went all the way. However, things must be assessed at the end of the season.”
Milinkovic-Savic has come such a long way since joining Lazio five years ago and is now expected to be one of this summer’s most fought-over players, with a reported £50million price tag unlikely to discourage potential suitors – particularly when hints emerge suggesting the player could be open to a move away.
So how good is he? Well, if his impressive stats don’t immediately show he’s a cut above, he “has the touch of a Brazilian and some of the things he does remind me of Zinedine Zidane,” according to agent Mateja Kezman (Goal.com) – who, let’s not forget, has played with the likes of Arjen Robben and Frank Lampard during his career.
How realistic would Milinkovic-Savic be for Spurs? There appears to be a lot of competition for his signature, and he won’t come cheap – but if Tottenham are prepared to loosen their purse strings, potentially recouping some money from player sales, and Mourinho can launch a major charm offensive, then you never know.
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