Tottenham Hotspur have reportedly agreed on a deal in the region of £25m with Brighton and Hove Albion to sign midfielder Yves Bissouma.
That is according to The Times, who suggest that Antonio Conte could be about to make his third signing of the summer, with Ivan Perišić and Fraser Forster already through the door at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
The move comes after the Spurs board had promised Conte at least six new signings this window, and the signing of the Mali international will no doubt be a boost to the Italian manager.
Pierre-Emile Højbjerg was one of the Lilywhites’ regular choices in midfield last season, so let’s see how he and Bissouma compare ahead of the 25-year-old’s move to North London.
The 58-time Danish international was a regular in the middle of the park for both Nuno Espírito Santo and Conte last season, scoring three goals and providing four assists in 48 appearances for the club, according to Transfermarkt.
The 6 foot midfield organiser is well known for orchestrating and dictating the play from midfield, and he ranks in the top 8% of midfielders in Europe’s top five leagues for attempted passes per 90 minutes (69.98%) and the top 10% for pass completion percentage (89.4%), according to FBref.
The 26-year-old is a tough-tackling midfielder and isn’t afraid to put in the defensive work ranking in the top 13% of midfielders for blocks made per 90 minutes (2.06), whilst making 154 combined tackles and interceptions in last season’s Premier League campaign, according to the same stats provider.
He has been consistently excellent throughout the 2021/22 Premier League campaign, and that is shown in his average SofaScore rating of 7.19, proving that he is capable of performing to a high standard on a consistent basis.
Meanwhile, the 18-time Mali international, who The Athletic’s Brighton reporter Andy Naylor has described as a “joy to watch”, made 28 appearances for Brighton last season, scoring two goals and providing two assists throughout the campaign, according to Transfermarkt.
The 6-foot beast is a different type of midfielder to his Danish counterpart, but still shows some of the same traits as his opposite number, with the Mali international ranking in the top 9% of midfielders across Europe’s top five leagues for pass completion per 90 minutes (89.7%), whilst ranking in the top 10% for dribbles completed per 90 (1.32), according to FBref.
He is also proficient in a defensive sense ranking in the top 10% of midfielders for clearances per 90 (2.17) and top 13% and 14% for tackles (3.11) and interceptions per 90 (2.34) respectively, according to the same stats provider.
The £31.5m-rated man has made 128 combined tackles and interceptions over the last season, which is less than his Danish counterpart, though it must be taken into account that the Mali international played significantly less games than the Spurs man.
An average SofaScore rating of 7.07 for the last Premier League season also suggests that the 25-year-old has performed to a high standard when called upon last season, even if it is a slightly less impressive score than his potential future Spurs teammate.
We think that even though Højbjerg had an incredibly impressive season for Conte’s side last campaign, Bissouma is another step-up in quality, and Spurs fans should be excited about the prospect of the pair of them playing together in the middle of the park next season.
Whilst the Dane is a more competent passer of the ball, and is more likely to dictate the play, the current Seagulls star is likely to be able to push Spurs up the pitch with his proficient dribbling ability, whilst also running opposition midfielders off the park.
We believe that this is a potential signing that could spark a much-needed reboot at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.