Southampton have stripped Tottenham target Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg of the club captaincy after he made it clear that he wants to leave the club, via Daily Mail.
Last month, Hojbjerg indicated that he wants to play at “an even higher level than I already am” amid interest from Spurs and Everton. Therefore, Ralph Hasenhuttl confirmed in a press conference earlier this week that he has given James Ward-Prowse the captain’s armband ahead of the Saints’ Premier League game against Norwich on Friday.
Earlier this year, Sky Sports revealed that Jose Mourinho has identified the midfielder at the top of his list of summer targets. According to The Times, the Saints will demand at least £35m for their former captain, despite the fact Tottenham had privately hoped he would cost around £20m.
Hojbjerg, who has been with Southampton since 2016 has been on Tottenham’s transfer radar for a number of months after impressing on the south coast.
The 24-year-old has played 28 games for Hasenhuttl’s side this term, supplying one assist, making 2.4 tackles per game, averaging 1.5 interceptions and completing 1.7 clearances per game on average (via WhoScored).
He can also occupy the defensive midfield position, which has proven to be a sticking point for Spurs in recent seasons, and he possesses leadership qualities that may turn out to be useful. Furthermore, the Danish international is adamant he wants to win the Premier League and play in the Champions League, which fits in line with Mourinho’s own ambitions.
Without sounding too harsh, it is difficult to imagine Southampton will be able to offer him European football any time soon, whilst the Lilywhites made it all the way to the Champions League final last year, and this should surely appeal to the Dane.
The Saints are struggling to cope with the financial repercussions of the coronavirus pandemic, coupled with the fact that Chinese chairman Gao Jisheng is desperate to sell his majority stake in the club, and it is likely that they will have to sell some of their star players in the summer to recoup some of the costs.
As it stands, a move for Hojbjerg may benefit all parties involved.
Tottenham fans, do you believe the board should sign Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg in the summer? Let us know what you think in the comments below!
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