Why Thomas Delaney would be an ideal replacement for Mousa Dembele
According to an earlier report from Football.London, Tottenham Hotspur were interested in signing Danish midfielder Thomas Delaney as a replacement for Mousa Dembele. However, no move materialised and the midfielder completed a move to Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund this summer.
A product of Copenhagen’s youth system, Delaney was a seasoned campaigner for his boyhood club for nine seasons before joining Werder Bremen in 2016. After successfully making his mark on the big stage in Europe, the Dane joined Dortmund this summer and has established himself as a regular starter at Signal Iduna Park.
At 5ft 11in, Delaney doesn’t have the height to stamp his authority in the air but he is quite capable of beating the opposition to the aerial balls, making him a genuine threat from corners and set-pieces at both ends of the pitch.
Delaney, who has 34 international caps to his name, is primarily a defensive midfielder by trade but he is also comfortable in a box-to-box role owing to his work rate and attacking prowess. The 27-year-old is a prolific passer of the ball and averages 56.4 passes per game with an accuracy of 84.9%, including 0.5 key passes and 3.1 long balls per game in the Bundesliga this term.
As evident from the figures, he is adept at dictating the tempo of the play with his passing and distribution, while also creating chances and changing the focal point of the attack with accurate long passes.
A good reader of the game in the middle of the park, he has the ability to break up the play with crucial tackles and interceptions, and is never afraid to put his foot through the ball. Delaney averages 2.1 tackles and 2.2 interceptions per game in the Bundesliga this season.
Furthermore, he is known for his attacking runs into the box and powerful long-range shots from outside the box. In other words, he has the ability to establish that link between the attack and the defence with his well-rounded abilities.
Spurs should reignite their interest in the Dane and try to lure him to North London as a replacement for Mousa Dembele. The Belgian has been sidelined for a large chunk of the season due to an ankle injury and he is likely to head for the exit door next summer upon the expiry of his contract while Victor Wanyama is also unlikely to be a part of the team for another season.
Despite not making a single signing in the summer, Mauricio Pochettino’s side has excelled on all fronts.
However, the lack of depth in the squad has come back to haunt them occasionally and it could play a major role towards the end of the season. They need some strengthening, particularly in central midfield, to add cover and competition for the likes of Eric Dier, Harry Winks and Oliver Skipp.
Someone like Thomas Delaney has tonnes of experience of playing at the highest level and can turn out to be the commanding presence that Spurs need in the middle of the park. That said, they should reignite their interest and go all out to sign him in January.