Benfica have made am enquiry about our Algerian midfielder Nabil Bentaleb. Previously Portuguese newspaper O Jogo asked his agents YBI Sports if he would be willing to move to Portugal, which quickly interpreted as Benfica having asked about him. His agent replied that his client was looking to stay in the Premier League.
Now Benfica have now asked and received the news that he will cost £12-million, which is too rich for them and they can't afford his wages anyway. The recent story run by some of the National press about Lazio asking about a loan move is, in fact, two weeks old. The Italians asked back then and were turned down flat.
Tottenham are not interested in loan deals unless they have a guaranteed purchase option at the end of them. That has been the case all summer as regular readers know and it hasn't changed.
Having negotiated his wages increase last summer, when he was reported as demanding parity with some of the top earners at the club, whcih we didn't think he was worth yet, he is now on a wage that most clubs can't afford. That is making offloading him difficult. Spanish clubs can't afford him, Italian clubs can't afford him, unless he wants to move to a top club and sit on the bench. Whether a top club would want him is another matter.
He has clearly fallen out with Pochettino, they were close before, but as former players will tell you once Pochettino decides you are no longer a part of the future he sees then you don't get the time others get. It is like he decides spending time on you is a waste of time as it will not benefit the club, it doesn't fit in his vision.
If we can't sell him Bentaleb will be a bit part player at best. Presumably, he would be below Carroll and Mason in the pecking order, yet on higher wages. If we can't sell him we may have to loan him and pay part of his wages, even without a purchase option. There are only two weeks left, the window closes on 31 August at 11pm UK time.