After a decade-long relationship, Tottenham Hotspur and Harry Kane decided to part ways, with the England captain moving to German champions Bayern Munich for £100m in the summer.
The loss of the club’s record goalscorer hadn’t really taken its toll on the squad after a high-flying start to the season under Ange Postecoglou. However, following recent injuries to key players such as Richarlison and James Maddison, Spurs are starting to feel the hangover from Kane’s departure.
Now, Postecoglou has set his sights on finally replacing Kane, although Tottenham’s new head coach certainly has an expensive palate.
Evan Ferguson to Tottenham links
According to talkSPORT, Tottenham Hotspur have turned their attention to Brighton and Hove Albion’s 19-year-old star Evan Ferguson, with the Europa League club slapping a £100m price tag on the Republic of Ireland centre-forward.
Ferguson penned a new six-year deal last week, keeping him at the Amex Stadium until 2029, amid interest from suitors in the Premier League, which has undoubtedly added value to Brighton’s asking price.
Additionally, talkSPORT are claiming that no release clause has been inserted into Ferguson’s contract, allowing the Seagulls to dictate his market value when clubs enquire about signing the youngster.
Ferguson has been making waves on the south coast and has already scored 15 professional goals in 43 appearances for Brighton since making his debut for the first team two seasons ago, including a hat-trick against Newcastle United at the beginning of the current campaign. The Irishman recently became the first player in the Premier League to score ten goals in a calendar year since Wayne Rooney.
England icon Gary Lineker believes there is even a “hint of [Erling] Haaland” in his style of play. Meanwhile, former Liverpool striker Danny Murphy has called Ferguson a “superstar”. Promising signs indeed for Spurs.
Why Heung-min Son would love Evan Ferguson
This season alone, Ferguson has found the net five times under Roberto De Zerbi in 11 league appearances, although the young striker has yet to convert any opportunities in three games in Europe. Nevertheless, Spurs’ main number ‘9’ Richarlison has scored just two goals this season in 11 matches in all competitions, the same number as centre-back Cristian Romero.
The primary source of goals at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this season has been club captain Heung-min Son, having bagged eight goals in 13 matches with a conversation rate of 36%, according to the BBC.
While Richarlison has already scored double his tally from last season, his contribution is nowhere near enough to replace Kane’s 32 goals from the previous campaign and the South Korean has an enormous goal-scoring burden as a result.
Ferguson is the man to help him in that regard. Compared to Spurs’ Brazilian forward, he has been holding his own amongst some of the best centre-forwards in Europe’s top five leagues. As per FBref’s data, the Ireland international is in the top 3% for passes completed per 90, the top 14% for non-penalty goals per 90, the top 19% for goals per 90, the top 9% for shots on target per 90 and the top 5% for outperforming his xG.
The Irishman’s displays in a blue and white shirt have led highly-rated manager De Zerbi to label his star striker as “incredible”. The teenager is boasting 0.77 goals per 90 this season in the Premier League while Richarlison has managed merely 0.17 goals per 90. Additionally, the Brazilian is registering 0.46 expected goals per 90 which is actually higher than Ferguson’s 0.42.
Son has been Spurs’ most potent player this season but Ange needs a frontman who can contribute more to the team than Richarlison and, while pricey, Ferguson may just be what the doctor ordered in terms of relieving that burden from their captain’s shoulders.
Having been described as “Harry Kane-esque” by Jamie O’Hara, a man Son shared quite the relationship with, it’s safe to say he’d love another similar player next to him.