There is a feasible chance of a swap deal with Barcelona, which would see Giovani Lo Celso Spain-bound and Clement Lenglet return to Tottenham, but is it a prospect worth considering?
Lenglet, who made 35 appearances during his loan spell, was released by Tottenham two days ago. However, reputable reports in the previous 48 hours have suggested that Tottenham is seriously considering securing the Frenchman’s services on a permanent basis.
Those reports are predicated on Tottenham paying a cellar, rock-bottom fee, probably no more than £5 million.
That amount almost certainly rubs Barcelona, a club ensnared in financial turmoil, the wrong way. While the Catalan club might not want to admit it openly, that’s what Lenglet is currently worth.
In quintessential Barcelona fashion, Xavi and the powers that be have found a viable workaround involving Lo Celso, who Xavi highly regards.
According to Transfermarkt, Lo Celso is worth more than Lenglet, albeit marginally. Lo Celso, who ignominiously made the seven-players-Tottenham-needs-to-cut list, was purchased for about £55 million in 2019.
His market value has plummeted to about £12 million, a 78 percent markdown. That must be worse than the devaluation of a brand-spanking new automobile, something I know nothing about.
Regardless, Spurs are set to lose a ton on a player whose loan spell at Villarreal just ended.
While not entirely inconceivable, it’s hard to imagine Lo Celso returning to Tottenham under Ange Postecoglou and influencing first-team proceedings.
As long as Barcelona’s owners scratch together between £5 and £10 million to compensate for the bridge between the players’ market valuations, the swap deal would be an astute bit of business for both clubs.
While Lenglet probably isn’t good enough to claim one of the two starting center-back roles, he is an excellent squad player who offers stability and assurance off the bench or in a rotational capacity.
He played in seven of Spurs’ eight Champions League matches, offering a beacon of composure for the most part. And he’s left-footed, which on its own speaks volumes.
Swap deals rarely come to fruition so this proposition might fade rapidly into oblivion. Yet few prospective swap deals are as mutually advantageous as this one.
Hopefully, both clubs see it that way, so we can welcome Lenglet back just days after wishing him farewell.
It would also allow Tottenham supporters to yell, “here we go” for the second time in the current transfer period.
Although it might feel slightly overdone where Lenglet is concerned, like someone who retires, returns briefly, and retires again.