Any truth to these Éver Banega stories?

Having looked at three stories that simply don't stack up when you look at them, Alvaro Moreno (Sevilla), Glen Johnson (Liverpool) and Jay Rodriguez (Southampton), I though I'd take a look at the reported interest in Éver Banega.

Any truth to these Éver Banega stories?

Who is he?

Éver Maximiliano David Banega is a 25 year-old Argentinian international was who has missed out on a place in his nations World Cup squad. He is a central midfielder, currently at Valencia but who spent last season on loan at Newell's Old Boys in the Argentine Primera Division. They finished 12th of 20 teams. He joined Valencia in January 2008 for £16.24 million (€20m) from Boca Juniors and has 24 international caps.

In the system that Mauricio Pochettino uses a central midfield can comprise three different types of player, a defensive central midfield, a link or box to box central midfielder or an attacking midfielder. Banega is listed as being able to play all three of these. 

Last season he played 8 games as a defensive midfielder, 5 as an attacking midfielder, 1 as the central box to box midfielder, 1 as an attacking right-sided player, 1 as a more traditional right hand side midfielder and 4 substitute appearances, prior to his loan move to Argentina. Safe to say there is clearly some versatility there but how is he going to fit into the Premier League?

To determine that we need to look at his strengths and weaknesses. As if common for midfielders in the modern game he plays short passes but he likes to dribble and receives a lot of fouls. That immediately makes me think of a Mousa Dembele type player. Dembele has of course been linked with both Everton and Napoli, is there a player of ours who hasn't been linked with Napoli recently!

He is a very strong dribbler who likes taking long shots (1 goal in 19 shots), is a good passer and has an eye for the through ball. He is a strong tackler and strong in defence.

Looking at the Spurs squad and the transfer rumours, stories flying around, defensive midfield or box to box midfield are the two areas we may need to buy if either Dembele, Sandro or Capoue move on.

Mauricio Pochettino having had his meeting with Daniel Levy is returning to Argentina, where his old club was Newell's Old Boys, which is in Buenos Aires. Pochettino was born in the area. 

You would have though that with the season over and having been living out there since January Banega will be staying there for his summer break. When a season has finished players take a break before they have to report back for pre-season training. 

Just as in the case of Lamela that I explain in an article at 6.30pm tonight, if this story has any truth, and I suspect it does, then Pochettino will surely have a meeting with the player while he is out in Argentina. The players agent is Marcelo Simonian who has headquarters is also in Buenos Aires so Franco Baldini who is going out to South America for the World Cup may well sit down and tie up a deal.

I have seen figures of £5.5 (€6.77m) to £8 million (€9.85m) quoted, yet he is out of contract at the end of the month so is available on a free transfer. Currently he is valued at around £10.5 million (€12.93m).

He is the right age and has all the attributes needed to succeed at Tottenham, I can only assume here that he is of the mental calibre we need.

If Spurs sign him then we can let one of our central midfielders leave, which raises capital for strengthening other areas of the team. Sounds just the sort of deal Daniel Levy would like so where some stories don't make sense, this one does.

However there is a spanner in the works, my sources reveal Banger is in negotiations with Marseilles Their new manager is none other than Marcelo Bielsa, the Argentinian who heavily influenced the creation of Pochettino's tactics.

Pochettino will have to beat his mentor to land his man.

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  1. Great blog, well researched articles

  2. This would be a great signing

  3. He's had a mixed time of it at Valencia but equally at times has shown some real quality. There's a player there no doubt it maybe might just need a fellow Argentianian who has made a similar journey to La Liga to maybe bring out his qualities on a consistent basis. If Poch can do that he'd have a great player on his hands