Tuesday, 13 August 2013


Who is he? Where does he play?

Another product of Porto's comprehensive scouting network is the Ghanaian born Atsu, signed as a 17 year old and allowed to progress in the club's youth ranks, he won the Best Young Player award for the 2010/2011 season.

He's still in the youth side?

After winning that honour, he was farmed out to Rio Ave where he made 31 appearances for the big river club, scoring 6 times and assisting four goals. Atsu was then considered in a bit-part role for Porto, making 17 appearances, mostly as a sub, as cover for Sylvesre Valera on the left hand side of Porto's three-pronged attack.

Left-winger then is he?

Mostly yes, although he can play anywhere across Paulo Fonseca's front 3. A left-winged touchline hugger is his role though, often relied upon to come onto the field late and punish the weary legs of tiring defences with his lighting pace, particularly in the Champions League. It is his speed that gives his markers nightmares, the type of ones that bite into the conscious and keeps you scared for days, such is his devastation in turning to sprint away from his man. It's not just his pace, but his terrific skill that beats defenders in 1vs1 situations; one blink and BOOM! he's past you, turning on the afterburners on his way to goal. 

He'll have a bright future for Porto then?

Atsu's contract expires next summer and he has so far been less co-operative than an undisciplined child on a shopping expedition with his mother, refusing to sign a new deal. So, he finds himself on the naughty step, that being the exile of the transfer market as Porto have little choice but to cash in on their contract rebel. Or they can roll the dice and risk losing him for zilch next summer, or even on a pre-contract agreement to a foreign club in January. It's their choice.

We suppose he'll be little short of suitors?

Oh no, with the prospect of a deal done on the cheap, Atsu is very much in demand so there is little worry about that. Liverpool want him, Everton want him, as do Sporting Lisbon and Benfica, but it is Spurs who seem to be the most genuinely interested, having been linked with him earlier in the summer before recently rekindling their fondness as the sale of Gareth Bale looms large. It is believed the north London club can lure him away from the Dragao for just £5 million. BARGAIN! Or even for as little as £1 million..... DOUBLE BARGAIN!!!!!

To White Hart Lane it is then?

Maybe, but probably not in direct replacement for the potentially Madrid-bound Bale. Atsu is more directly comparable to Aaron Lennon, the quicker, wider, more conventional of Spurs' wingers. What Astu will bring is a clever use of the ball in the final third which very rarely sees him misplace a pass and gives him an intelligent ability to thread a delightful through-ball. It'll all be coming to a league nearer to you, either this summer, or the next.

No comments:

Post a Comment