Amidst confusion over whether or not Inter Milan have in fact bid for Montpellier maestro Younes Belhanda, it looks as though Tottenham could miss out on signing their Moroccan ‘target’.
Earlier this week the midfielder’s club president Louis Nicollin told the press that Montpellier had in fact accepted a €14 million for Belhanda after rejecting an undisclosed offer from Turkish side Fenernahce.
However, Inter Milan director Marco Branca has since dismissed suggestion that the Italian giants had even registered any official interest in the 22-year-old with his club.
“Sorry to contradict the president of Montpellier, but Inter has never submitted a bid for his player Younes Belhanda."
The midfielder was understood to be one of several candidates to replace Wesley Sneijder who had also been linked with Spurs.
I questioned whether Spurs would in fact require the Moroccan after they confirmed the signing of Schalke playmaker Lewis Holtby as both players are the same age and possess a very similar skill set as well as wearing the same number and playing in the same position.
However, as I was swiftly enlightened by a number of Spurs fans, Gylfi Sigurdsson hasn’t quite mustered enough creativity to replace Luka Modric and, whilst Moussa Dembele has improved and looks to be developing a good chemistry with his teammates, there is undoubtedly some room for another creative player within Andre Villas-Boas' ranks.
The fitness concerns over 32-year-old Scott Parker along with Sandro who will miss the remainder of the season through injury means the Portuguese coach may need to bring in some re-enforcements as they push on with their ambitions of qualifying for the Champion’s League.
Although Belhanda has impressed as an attacking midfielder, a more traditional number 10 role, he can and has played in a deeper role where he operates as a deep-lying playmaker.
That is a role where Holtby would be uncomfortable and in the absence of Parker and Sandro, Spurs would have only Tom Huddlestone to fill the void in that position, despite there being concerns over his form.
Perhaps the elusive ‘bid’ from Inter to Montpellier has been lost in translation or, perhaps Spurs have entered the race to sign one of the most exciting prospects of his generation.
As things stand Spurs, Inter, Arsenal, Everton and Fenerbahce are the interested parties and I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest to see Younes Belhanda playing his football in North London in February, instead of Northern Italy.
image: © Yvelines