Gil next? The last 11 players Tottenham have signed from La Liga
After a long managerial search, Nuno Espirito Santo was selected by Tottenham to succeed Jose Mourinho and the Portuguese is already getting busy in the transfer window, targeting Sevilla winger Bryan Gil.
A deal of £21million plus Erik Lamela has been agreed between the two parties for the services of the 20-year-old, according to Fabrizio Romano, and it is a move that would make Gil Tottenham’s 12th signing from La Liga in the Premier League era.
Looking back through those players, it’s fair to say they’ve had varied success. Some failed to make any impact at all, others failed to live up to the hype, while a couple went on to achieve cult hero status. Here are all 11 of them.
The left-back was brought in from Real Madrid in the summer of 2020 for just shy of £30million, but while he was often impressive going forward in his first season, he left a lot to be desired at the back.
However, aged just 24, Nuno will no doubt harbour hopes of getting the best from the Spaniard and he could well form a partnership with Gil down the left-hand side for Spurs.
Giovani Lo Celso
In one match Lo Celso can look like the perfect player for Spurs to build their midfield around, the next he can watch the game pass him by.
The former Real Betis man possesses plenty of qualities but has struggled to define his role under Mauricio Pochettino and Jose Mourinho in his two seasons in north London.
The former Espanyol goalkeeper is best known for his performances against city rivals Barcelona, as well as some of the most blatant shithousing from a goalkeeper since Jens Lehmann.
He joined Spurs on a season-long loan in the 2016-17 season but failed to make a single appearance, not even in the League Cup, as he sat behind Hugo Lloris and Michel Vorm.
— Spurred On (@spurredontv) August 23, 2016
The Belgian’s transfer from Atletico Madrid back in the summer of 2015 remains a contentious one for Southampton, who had an option to sign the centre-back permanently after an impressive loan spell at St Mary’s.
Despite the threat of legal action from Saints, Atletico cancelled the option and took Spurs’ higher offer, and he’s become an important servant for the north Londoners, alongside his compatriot Jan Verthonghen at the back. More than 100 appearances later, and despite regular rumours of his departure, the 32-year-old remains an integral member of the squad.
The Argentine centre-half had quite the reputation as a reliable performer when he made the switch from Sevilla to Tottenham, but one season, 20 appearances and more than a few comedy errors later he was shipped on. It’s probably best for all concerned to forget about that period of his career.
Transfer genius Monchi, who had originally scouted Fazio as a teenager back in Argentina, sanctioned a deal to turn his loan at Roma into a permanent deal. His stock has gone back up in the Italian capital; he was particularly impressive during the club’s run to the Champions League semis in 2018.
You couldn’t help but feel sorry for Soldado at Spurs, where it felt like he couldn’t catch a break.
He was prolific at Valencia, scoring 81 goals in 141 appearances, yet he was anything but after his much-hyped move to Spurs in 2013. The Spaniard made 76 appearances in all competitions, netting just 16 goals.
Rafael van der Vaart
We f*cking loved Rafael van der Vaart at Spurs.
Giovani Dos Santos
A lot like Gil, Dos Santos was also a highly-rated prospect before his arrival in north London, signing from Barcelona. The Mexican forward spent four years at Tottenham between 2008 and 2012, although that included being shipped out on loan to Ipswich, Galatasaray and Racing Santander.
If nothing else, not many players have that combination of clubs on their CV.
The back-up goalkeeper joined his compatriot Juande Ramos in 2008, arriving from Real Zaragoza.
His one and only appearance was as a late substitute for the injured Heurelho Gomes a 4-2 win over Liverpool in a League Cup quarter-final.
We have to jump back seven years for the last La Liga arrival before Sanchez. Kasey Keller was plying his trade with Rayo Vallecano before moving to Spurs at the end of his contract.
The man with one of the most American names of all time played every minute of the Premier League in both 2002-03 and 2003-04 but was demoted to back-up upon Paul Robinson’s arrival.
Arsene Wenger once tried to bring the midfielder to Arsenal in 1997, but the deal fell through and Saib had to settle for a move to Valencia instead.
A year later he became the first Algerian to play in the Premier League, moving to Spurs for £2.3million, although he ultimately underwhelmed, leaving for Al Nassr two years after his arrival.