COMMENT By Will Butcher
Mauricio Pochettino should bolster his midfield options at Tottenham with the signing of Besiktas midfielder Oguzhan Ozyakup in the summer transfer window.
Here, Football Insider considers three reasons why Pochettino should bring the 24-year-old to north London ahead of the 2017-18 season.
Prove rivals wrong
Ozyakup spent four years with local rivals Arsenal after Arsene Wenger opted to bring the 25-time international to the Emirates Stadium from AZ Alkmaar. The Dutch-born star made just two appearances for the Gunners’ senior team, starring instead for Wenger’s reserve side where he scored 11 times and provided a further six assists during his 41 appearances. However, he was let go for a nominal fee in 2012 when he joined Besiktas and Ozyakup could look to join Spurs in order to prove to Wenger wrong. That could bring the best out of him, as Spurs look to mount another title challenge.
Creative holding midfielder needed
Pochettino has used two systems throughout the season; a 4-2-3-1 and a 3-4-3 formation. Both line-ups, though, contain two holding midfield players and it is here where an improvement could be made. Goals are expected to come from the front three, in the likes of Dele Alli, Harry Kane and Christian Eriksen. But with Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele contributing just four goals and two assists in their 74 appearances, creativity from deep is needed. Ozyakup has shown his eye for goal despite playing in front of the defence, with four goals as well as adding seven assists in just 34 outings. Spurs could add another dimension to their attacking play with his signature.
Pochettino loves a bargain
At £12million, Ozyakup is a bargain. His contract at the Vodafone Arena is set to end in a year’s time, and that will see Besiktas keen to sell him this summer instead of losing him on a free in the summer of 2018. Pochettino is known for his ability to strike a bargain, bringing in Wanyama for £12million and Toby Alderweireld for £11.5million in 2015. Penning the signature of Ozaykup would add another name to that list, if he does indeed make the move to White Hart Lane this summer.
In other Tottenham transfer news, this £40million-rated winger is reluctant to sign a new deal after reported Spurs interest.