Tottenham failed to sign Chelsea's Conor Gallagher in January - but now they can sign someone even better
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Oh, to be Ange Postecoglou. While the rest of his Premier League managerial peers were scrabbling around in the bargain bin for new signings this January, the affable Aussie was afforded not one, but two decently-sized acquisitions by Tottenham Hotspur's transfer chiefs.
Spurs were able to bring in both Radu Dragusin and Timo Werner, two players you might actually have heard of, and two who, on paper at least, go some way towards solving pressing issues in Postecoglou's squad. But not even Spurs could get all of their desired business done last month.
Alongside Dragusin and Werner, it was widely reported that the North London club were interested in parachuting in a central midfielder, with Chelsea linchpin Conor Gallagher frequently mentioned as one prospective target. In the end, of course, the Blues made the wise decision (a rarity in and of itself) to keep the 24-year-old at Stamford Bridge, and Spurs' pursuit ultimately came up fruitless.
But you would imagine that midfield reinforcements will remain high on their list of priorities in the summer transfer window, and if they do, then Tottenham will require alternative options to Gallagher, provided Chelsea dig their heels in once more. One viable candidate could be Wolves star Joao Gomes.
Like Gallagher, the Brazilian was touted as a potential Spurs target last month, with various reports even going as far as to suggest that a bid of around £30 million was in the pipeline. Nothing concrete materialised, and Gomes is still at Molineux as we speak, but at that price, it was claimed that Wolves could have been tempted into a sale.
And if Spurs are to keep searching for a midfielder in the coming months, they could do far worse than reigniting their apparent interest in Gomes. At 22, he is still remarkably young for a player who has consistently shown as much poise and quality as he has during his time in England, and his energetic, combative approach to his work feels well-suited to the signature ethos that Postecoglou is trying to imprint on this Tottenham side.
Naturally, there will be those who would rather that Spurs went all out to sign Gallagher, as was seemingly the original plan. But sometimes there is a lot to be said for Plan B's and blessings in disguise. Gomes would represent a worthy proxy, and one who would boast just as much promise while costing considerably less.
If Tottenham don't make their move for the Wolves star, it only feels like a matter of time before another of the Premier League's traditional heavyweights do. Whoever signs the South American is going to be securing themselves a sparkling, if not wholly refined, talent, and one that could serve them well for years to come.
Of course, we are still some way off the summer transfer window, and an awful lot can change between now and then, but if Tottenham are still on the lookout for players who can bolster their engine room, and if, for whatever reason, they are unable to sign Gallagher, they could land themselves a wonderful alternative in the form of Gomes.