Tottenham fans want to see Spurs buy exciting players this summer. Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg isn’t that, but he’s just the steady presence Jose Mourinho needs.
With every day that passes, it seems more and more like Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is destined to secure his dream move from Southampton to Tottenham. The 24-year-old midfielder isn’t the scintillating signing Spurs fans dream of on a regular basis, but that doesn’t mean he can’t really help Jose Mourinho’s squad next season.
According to The Daily Echo, Hojbjerg is determined to reject all other advances to ensure his immediate future lies in North London. Tottenham and Southampton officials continue to quibble over the precise transfer fee that will be required to cement the move. Nonetheless, Hojbjerg will almost certainly be playing for Spurs next season.
Focusing on what Hojgjerg is not is rather depressing. He’s not the sort of midfielder who’s going to power the Tottenham attack with his creative dribbling ability or silky vertical passes. The chances of him developing into sexy football player are almost nil. In many ways, he’s the antithesis of the club’s “dare is to do” mantra.
Hojgjerg is the exact player Tottenham need, whether they’re willing to admit it or not
That mantra hasn’t secured a trophy for Spurs since 2008. That might suggest that it’s time for a new way of thinking to take hold at the club. That’s precisely why Jose Mourinho was hired to take over for Mauricio Pochettino in the middle of the 2019/20 campaign.
The Special One’s brand of football can be downright ugly at times. He’s quite happy to nick an early goal and then settle back into defense for the rest of the match. Interestingly, that’s just the strategy that allowed Tottenham to secure European qualification by going on a nice stretch of results at the end of last season.
Having a rock-solid midfield is an absolute requirement to employ that kind of strategy for a full season. Mourinho clearly understands he doesn’t have that sort of personnel available to him at the moment. To put it bluntly, a double-pivot of Harry Winks and Moussa Sissoko is not anything close to Mourinho’s dream.
That’s why Hojgberg can be an astute summer signing for the club. He’s just the sort of boring, stable player that Spurs need to solidify their midfield. Mourinho’s side desperately needs a midfielder who is willing to sit back and cover his teammates’ defensive responsibilities. Tottenham don’t need Hojgjerg to be great. If he can steadily win the ball and play it up to his attacking teammates he’ll give his side a major boost.
The club, of course, hope that adding a model professional like Hojbjerg will make it easier for flair players like Giovani Lo Celso and, more importantly, Tanguy Ndombele to thrive next season. That represents a reasonable gamble for Spurs. It’s not the only way for Hojbjerg to pay big dividends, but it represents the best possible outcome for Tottenham.
At the very least, Spurs supporters should be open to the idea that Hojbjerg can help Mourinho build a platform for the team’s most exciting stars to flourish. He’s never going to be a Tottenham legend, but that isn’t the purchase the club needs to make at the moment. On this instance, Spurs are perfectly justified in their desire to make a boring signing.