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Could Hector Herrera hold the key to Tottenham Hotspur's pursuit of Joao Moutinho?

Joao Moutinho

The Mexican midfielder is reportedly closing in on a move to Porto this January, which would beg the question whether he is being brought in to replace a Portuguese midfielder strongly coveted by Tottenham Hotspur.

Hector Herrera is a young, dynamic box-to-box midfielder comfortable both going forward with the ball and screening his defence. The Mexican has a reasonable eye for goal himself, but is more comfortable creating chances for his teammates through his clever passing. All in all, if Porto were looking for a replacement to Joao Moutinho, they could do a lot worse than sign Hector Herrera.

With that in mind, the reports suggesting they are close to agreeing a deal with Pachuca for the 22 year old will be very interesting to Tottenham Hotspur fans who are holding out hope they will be able to bring Moutinho to White Hart Lane.

There was plenty of speculation at the start of January that Spurs could make another move for the Portuguese midfielder that Andre Villas-Boas considers crucial to the long term set up of the side, but the move looked difficult to complete, especially with Moutinho keen to see out the Champions League season with Porto.

However the midfielder has previously indicated himself open to a move to work with Villas-Boas again, and with Spurs now possibly without Sandro for the rest of the season, and desperate to ensure Champions League qualification, they could go in strongly for their long term target in the next couple of weeks.

One way they could be aided is if Porto sign a replacement for Moutinho, and Herrera could be that man. Although they could be bringing in the Mexican now ahead of Moutinho's summer departure, having a back-up plan in place at the club might soften their negotiating stance ever so slightly this January.

One pitfall could be the other interest in Herrera, with Manchester United and PSG also linked with the player in the past. Porto are favourites, and would probably be a good choice for Herrera given his inexperience of European football, but there is a chance that the Portuguese club could miss out.

However if the move goes as expected, Spurs might be handed a welcome boost in their pursuit of Moutinho, although it might be more use to them in the summer than in the next couple of weeks.

image: © http://www.flickr.com/photos/goulao/

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