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Tottenham signing this 25-year-old star from PL rivals would strengthen a key position

Why Joao Cancelo would be a massive coup for Tottenham 

According to El Desmarque (h/t The Sun), Tottenham are in talks to sign Portuguese full-back Joao Cancelo from Manchester City.

The 25-year-old joined the Citizens from Juventus for a staggering £60million this past summer, with Danilo going the other way as a part of the deal. However, he has struggled to establish himself as a regular fixture in the playing XI under Pep Guardiola. 

Cancelo has played 19 times in all competitions for City so far this season but has started only 7 games in the Premier League, having struggled to usurp Kyle Walker in the pecking order at the Etihad. 

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Joao Cancelo has started only 7 times in the Premier League for Man City so far this season (Getty Images)

The Portuguese international shot to prominence with Benfica in his homeland and went on to feature for Valencia in Spain and the likes of Inter Milan and Juventus in Italy before moving to join the reigning Premier League champions.

Cancelo has plenty of years remaining on the six-year deal that he signed while joining City this past summer and it remains to be seen whether Guardiola would be willing to sanction a departure for a full-back nearing his prime.

Meanwhile, Tottenham have already completed their first piece of business in the winter market, with Gedson Fernandes moving to North London on an 18-month loan deal from Benfica to bolster the club’s injury-ravaged midfield cavalry. 

However, with talismanic striker Harry Kane expected to be out of action for the next three months due to his hamstring problem and inconsistency at the back continuing to threaten the club’s pursuit of a top-four finish, Tottenham have some gaping holes to fill at both ends of the pitch.

A lack of stability in the full-back department has been a major problem for the Lilywhites this season, following the departure of Kieran Trippier to Atletico Madrid. Serge Aurier has shown that he is capable of churning out impressive displays but there seems to be no semblance of consistency in the Ivorian’s game. 

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Cancelo won the Serie A crown during his time at Juventus in Italy (Getty Images)

Academy graduate Kyle Walker-Peters hasn’t featured in the Premier League regularly after starting the first three league fixtures in the ongoing campaign. Juan Foyth, primarily a centre-back by trade, has been occasionally used as a right-back but the Argentine is only a stop-gap in that role. 

Spurs’ problems on the other side of the pitch have been even more galling, with both Ben Davies and Danny Rose struggling for form and fitness. Jan Vertonghen has been called upon by Mourinho to play as a left-back while the impressive emergence of youngster Japhet Tanganga has given the fans something to cheer about.

Rose remains keen on departing the club in the near future when his contract comes to an end (h/t Sun) while Walker-Peters’ lack of involvement has put Premier League rivals Crystal Palace, Brighton and Southampton on red alert (h/t Sky Sports).

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Mourinho is keen to bring Cancelo to North London before the January deadline (Getty Images)

Verdict

It’s high time for Tottenham to put an end to the mediocrity of their existing full-backs and Joao Cancelo, who is capable of playing on both flanks, would be a brilliant signing.

The 25-year-old has largely been used as an understudy to Walker at City but a move to North London would represent better prospects of regular first-team football, with Aurier failing to convince and Walker-Peters currently a marginalized figure in the ranks. 

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All in all, Spurs completing a raid for Joao Cancelo would go a long way towards sorting out their right-back conundrum once and for all.

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