Tottenham Hotspur yesterday completed an 18-month loan deal for Portugal midfielder Gedson Fernandes with an option to buy him outright for £56 million.
But who is he and what will the talented youngster bring to the party in London and the Premier League after spurning reported interest from Chelsea?
👔 Fernandes' Style
Gedson is tidy on the ball and has quick feet and a good first touch. The simplicity of his game means that it doesn't catch the eye of fans immediately but his pass-and-move style makes him an effective central link player that keeps attacks flowing. He does not have the panache of an attacking midfielder, but he has destructive ball-carrying and dribbling abilities that allow him to turn defence into attack quickly.
His skill-set would lend itself well to a team that does most of its attacking in transitions or direct counter-attacking, like Spurs. Fernandes is truly a box-to-box midfield all-rounder who has a good engine and can press intelligently. Fernandes has attributes to success at Tottenham, especially as one of a double pivot at the base of a 4-2-3-1, if he's next to a playmaker like Tanguy Ndombele or even a ball-retention expert such as Harry Winks.
👟 Fernandes in action
🤕 Spurs injury crisis
Because of long-term injuries to French midfielders Moussa Sissoko and Tanguy Ndombele, there's a void in the centre of the park that needs to be filled.
One thing we know is that Fernandes is versatile, having filled roles in wide midfield areas, in the heart of the midfield or even as the deepest-lying man in the engine room. He is a central midfielder by trade but he is capable of filling numerous midfield roles if his manager needs him to do so.
🥇 Accolades & experience
Having just turned 21, Fernandes has played 29 first team games in the Portuguese Primeira Liga (most of them off the bench) scoring zero goals and providing two assists. If that is extended, he has two goals and five assists in 30 domestic cup and European appearances, which paints a fairer picture of his abilities. Much of his limited game-time this season has been owing to a metatarsal injury suffered early in 2019/2020, however, and he'll be hoping he can string a few games together now at Tottenham's shiny new ground.
Fernandes already has a Portuguese Primeira Liga winner's medal from last season and has earned two caps for Portugal.
Fernandes turned 21 last week, and in terms of both age and career stage, he's a rookie. He has yet to establish himself in the Benfica first team, and now there will be a demand from Spurs fans for him to hit the ground running in their own first XI.
With Moussa Sissoko out long-term, Fernandes has a chance to stake his claim for a first-team place immediately as he and Sissoko are stylistically similar. Will he grab it with both hands?
Watch out for Fernandes as he hopes to make the Spurs team that travels to in-form Watford this Saturday.
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