It’s well known that Tottenham Hotspur manager Ange Postecoglou is hoping to add another player to his ranks this winter, and after welcoming centre-back Radu Dragusin and versatile forward Timo Werner, this will likely be a midfielder.
Indeed, recent reports confirm this, with Chelsea midfielder Conor Gallagher seemingly the top target for transfer before the close of the January transfer window; Wolverhampton Wanderers‘ Joao Gomes has also been touted.
But Spurs definitely don’t have a myopic attitude toward their spending, with chairman Daniel Levy seemingly earmarking several exciting players for a summer transfer, when the money flows more freely.
Despite the capture of Werner and the deals struck last summer, Harry Kane was sold to Bayern Munich in August and there is still room for another forward-placed player, which could be a key theme upon the conclusion of the 2023/24 campaign.
Spurs transfer targets – forwards
While Spurs have been sniffing around for an out-and-out centre-forward – Bournemouth’s Dominic Solanke and Dutch Eredivisie champion Santiago Gimenez are both on the radar – the search for summer reinforcements is not exclusive to one position.
Tottenham now eyeing £34m Brazilian as well as Conor Gallagher – Sky Sports
He’s having a very good season.
For this reason, there may well be truth behind a recent report from journalist Graeme Bailey claiming that Crystal Palace winger Michael Olise is „set to leave“ Selhurst Park in the summer, with all of the Premier League’s top outfits interested and Tottenham understood to have made an enquiry.
Chelsea fought and failed to sign the Frenchman last summer but Steve Parish is expected to allow his star to leave this year, though he does now have a rumoured £60m release clause in his contract.
Michael Olise’s season in numbers
Olise has been regarded as an exciting talent for several years now, earning the 2020/21 Championship’s Young Player of the Season award before completing an £8m transfer to south London in July 2021.
Last season, he showcased his creative brilliance and racked up 11 assists from 31 starting appearances in the Premier League, leading talent scout Jacek Kulig to name him as “one of the best wide playmakers in Europe.“
Since the summer, however, the 22-year-old has flipped the switch and started heaping emphasis on his shooting skills, which, it has to be said, has proved to be an undisputed success during his time on the pitch.
As per Sofascore, he has posted five goals and one assist across just seven starts and complemented this prolific return with 2.2 key passes and 3.8 ball recoveries per game, completing 81% of his passes, succeeding with 77% of his dribbles and winning 60% of his contested ground duels.
Olise only made his seasonal debut in November after an extended period of convalescence following a hamstring injury, and his resounding return to action was then paused earlier this month, with Roy Hodgson confirming that he is likely to miss the remainder of January action with another muscular issue.
Nonetheless, the £100k-per-week star – who can play across the frontline but is finding a permanent home on the right flank – has demonstrated by so many outfits are eager to add him to the ranks, with Postecoglou’s project only reaching new heights with his deployment.
How Michael Olise compares to Heung-min Son
Given Olise’s newfound ability to wreak havoc on opposing defences with his own striking, the early signs are there that he could be the successor to Heung-min Son’s spot at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
Once dubbed „world-class“ by Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, Son has scored 157 goals and provided 85 assists across 393 appearances for Tottenham since signing from Bayer Leverkusen for £22m way back in 2015.
He’s considered one of the finest Premier League forwards of his generation and replacing him is certainly not an easy task, but should Olise make the cross-London move, the club could indeed land the dream heir.
Premier League 23/24: Michael Olise vs Heung-min Son
Stat (per 90)
Pass completion %
Aerial duels won
*Sourced via FBref’s Player Comparison Tool
It is… astounding. Looking at the table above, the sublime form Olise has been in this season really is illuminated, trumping Tottenham’s talisman across nearly every single facet.
Now, the respective players have played a vastly differing amount of football this term, Son playing just over 1000 minutes more in the English top-flight, but this does not diminish the incredible feats achieved by Olise during his time on the pitch.
Moreover, the fact that he has featured so irregularly as he battles against injuries only enhances the argument that he has been performing at a level to rival any star this season.
For example, Son has plundered 12 goals and five assists across 20 Premier League fixtures so far and has looked equally devastating across both centre-forward and wide roles, also creating 11 big chances for his teammates – a tally bettered only by Liverpool duo Mohamed Salah and Trent Alexander-Arnold.
The South Korean star might be trumped across the lion’s share of metrics but he is easily one of the finest forwards in the Premier League and his prowess may actually be the gold standard for a rising phenom such as Olise to mould his game to.
Indeed, Olise has unearthed a rich vein of goalscoring form recently but Son’s consistency throughout many years of service in north London is more than admirable, with the £190k-per-week machine actually ranking among the top 4% of positional peers for goals scored per 90, underpinning his prolific might.
Olise, too, only scored twice across 40 appearances in all competitions last campaign and there is not yet enough evidence to suggest that he can maintain his shooting success and rival the cutting edge of a player like Son.
But, from the snippet received over the past few months, there is an undoubted level of talent to propel Olise right to the forefront of the European game, with his recent feats the first times of latent world-class talent stirring.
Son is now 31 years old and there are still years in the tank for the Spurs skipper, but his influence will not last forever and for this reason, Olise’s signature must be prioritised to ensure Tottenham’s offensive fluency is preserved over the coming years.