Just days ago, Calciomercato reported that Tottenham Hotspur were among the clubs interested in signing Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic in January.
On the face of it, the rumour seemed dubious. On the one hand, Mandzukic could take some pressure off Harry Kane in attack, and would fit the mould as a target man off the bench to replace Fernando Llorente.
However, Mandzukic comes with huge wages, hasn't played a league game all season and is approaching 34, meaning Spurs would be reluctant to splash big cash on him.
Maurizio Sarri has completely frozen out Mandzukic this season, meaning he can likely go in January, but Tottenham's pursuit has been complicated.
Tuttosport claim that Mandzukic is so desperate to join Manchester United that he wants Juve to let him go in December, and train with the Red Devils for a month before being able to make his debut in January.
The Croatian clearly has his heart set on United, meaning Spurs may be wasting their time with a move of their own, even if it all depends on Juve accepting such terms.
A target man should still be a priority for Spurs, as they have missed that presence since Llorente's exit, but they should also learn from Llorente's shortcomings.
The Spaniard was too often found to be a little immobile, and landing a target man with a little more pace – a Jean-Philippe Mateta or a Yussuf Poulsen – seems to be more what Spurs are needing.
Mandzukic's experience at the top level would be valuable, but he's not worth getting into a financial war with United over, and with his heart seemingly set on a move to Old Trafford, Spurs should think about other targets.
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