Tottenham prepared to battle Jose Mourinho for top transfer target

Tottenham may have sacked Jose Mourinho, but they still have to deal with the Roma manager in the January transfer window. 

Emerson Royale has entrenched himself as Tottenham’s No. 1 right wing back under Antonio Conte, but Matt Doherty engenders no confidence as the team’s backup. That’s why Spurs continue to be linked strongly with a January move for Norwich defender Max Aarons.

Interestingly, per Corriere delo Sport Jose Mourinho and Roma are also interested in acquiring the 21-year-old Englishman. Tottenham and Roma aren’t the only two clubs that are running the rule over Aarons at the moment, but it’s easy to see the race boiling down to a conflict between Spurs and their former gaffer.

Jose Mourinho isn’t done affecting Tottenham

Reports claim that Norwich are willing to part with their starting fullback for a transfer sum approaching 22 million Euros this summer. That’s a far cry from the £50 million the Premier League club wanted for their prized youngster in previous windows. That price tag put Tottenham and several other English clubs off the idea of adding Aarons to their squads.

From Tottenham’s perspective, Aarons would give Conte a massive upgrade over Doherty as Royale’s partner at the right wing back position. Aarons doesn’t have the size to be anything more than an adequate defender, but his excellent pace and crossing ability make him an ideal wing back for Conte’s system.

Aarons’ status as a homegrown player will also add to his potential value to Spurs. The squad’s balance between homegrown and international players isn’t at a crisis point, but it’s starting to approach that kind of stress level. Adding an English squad player like Aarons would give Fabio Paratici more flexibility to add foreign talent in the future.

The bottom line on Aarons is that Tottenham should be able to get a deal over the line ahead of Mourinho and Roma if they believe he’s capable of playing regular senior minutes. He fits Conte’s system far better than Mourinho’s. That, combined with the allure of staying in the Premier League should push Aarons to advocate for a move to Spurs over the Serie A option.