Tottenham could potentially sign Jose Mourinho’s new Sergio Ramos by bringing in Fiorentina’s Nikola Milenkovic.
What’s the story?
Reports in recent weeks have suggested that Spurs are after the Serbia international, and are keen on bringing him to the Premier League.
An update was delivered on their pursuit of the 6 foot 4 powerhouse by Italian publication CalcioMercato, who claim that Mourinho’s side, along with fellow Premier League giants Liverpool, have reached out to Milenkovic’s agents over a potential move.
The report adds that Manchester United also remain in the equation for his signature, and that Fiorentina also hold out hope they can tie him down to a new deal.
Mourinho’s new Ramos?
Throughout his illustrious managerial career, Mourinho has worked with some of the world’s best, not least Sergio Ramos in his time at Real Madrid.
The Spain international was one of the cornerstones of Madrid’s success in the early 2010s under Mourinho’s leadership, playing 137 times for him – the second-most he’s played for any manager, only behind current Los Blancos boss Zinedine Zidane.
Ramos was his leader on and off the pitch, and enjoyed some of his peak years under Mourinho’s management – he was named in FIFA’s World XI for three years in a row during the pair’s time at the Bernabeu.
Speaking back in 2012, the current Spurs boss remarked: “When Sergio is at his best, he gives me all that a defender has to give: security in defence, quality bringing the ball out, strength and set pieces, leadership. When he is in shape, he is one of the best.”
And in Milenkovic, Daniel Levy could unearth something incredibly similar. The Serbian is an absolute powerhouse in the centre of defence, averaging 1.5 tackles and 1.3 interceptions in Serie A this season – both stats in the top five among Fiorentina’s entire squad.
The £25.2m-rated titan has already earned rave reviews for his abilities and potential, being described as someone who is “fearless” and is a “beast“. Milenkovic has shown he could also develop into the leader Ramos is right now, having captained Fiorentina on a couple of occasions already this season, despite only being 23.
When Mourinho joined Madrid as manager in May 2010, Ramos was only 24 and was still trying to make his mark on world football. Milenkovic is in that similar age profile, and under the Spurs boss’ guidance, could develop into a superstar just like the Spaniard did.