Catania central defender Nicolas Spolli has revealed that he rejected the chance to move to the big-spending Londoners during the transfer window.
With the release of William Gallas on a free transfer and the sale of Steven Caulker to Cardiff, a central defender was always going to be on Andre Villas-Boas’ shopping list over the summer. In the end Romania international Vlad Chiriches filled that gap at Tottenham, but it could well have been someone else.
Solid Serie A campaigner Nicolas Spolli has revealed that he opted to stay with Catania this summer rather than entertain the option of a move to White Hart Lane.
"I had told the president that I wanted to remain in Catania as soon as last season came to a close, before there was any talk of transfers," Spolli is quoted by La Sicilia.
"When the interest from Tottenham came in, the club didn't even need to ask me, because they knew what my intentions were.
"I am happy in Catania, it's a wonderful city and when I have the time it's incredible to enjoy both the sea and Etna."
Spolli is an Argentine defender, renowned for his no-nonsense style. At 30 years old he has spent the majority of his career in his homeland, racking up over 100 games for Newell’s Old Boys.
He moved to the Sicilian club in 2009 and has now played over 100 times in Serie A for his side. He has never been capped internationally, but is an important man at club level.
On first inspection, Spolli does not really fit-in with the type of footballer that Tottenham have been targeting of late. With a young manager at the helm, the emphasis has been on bringing in youthful players with international experience that have potential to turn into superstars.
Of the players brought in by Tottenham over the summer, Roberto Soldado was the oldest at the age of 28, and comes with a fierce reputation for consistently scoring goals. The rest are all in their early-to-mid twenties with a lot of growth still to do, despite admirable existing abilities.
At 30 years old Spolli would have been a stop-gap player, with no sell-on value. The South American may well have taken time to acclimatise to his environs and although solid is not the athletic breed of footballer that Villas-Boas has been targeting.
It appears that Chiriches is a more promising addition to the squad, who has potential to improve further. Spolli is in his prime at the moment but with limited longevity wouldn’t have been the most sensible signing for a club with the long-term in mind.
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