Tottenham have completed Ivan Perisic’s free transfer.
The 33-year-old, who can play at full-back and forward, has signed a two-year deal to become one of Antonio Conte’s first signings in the summer window.
Inter Milan CEO Giuseppe Marotta admits he was dying to keep Perisic this summer but couldn’t convince him to extend his stay at Milan.
“There are regrets,” Marotta said on Monday. “But he wanted a new experience in the Premier League.
“We weren’t able to make any better offers, his choice was simply based on a different future than the present. Greatest respect for that and a big thank you to him as well.”
Goalkeeper Fraser Forster has also agreed to sign for Spurs when his contract at Southampton expires and has already completed his medical checks.
The Croatia international, who has won 113 caps for his country and scored in the 2018 World Cup final, has been at Inter since 2015. He won Serie A last season under Tottenham head coach Conte after spending the 2019/20 season on loan at Bayern Munich where he won the Champions League.
Despite speculation about his future at Spurs, Conte is preparing for next season at the club after talks with the football’s managing director Fabio Paratici on Friday.
Conte has been told the club intends to sign at least six or seven players as Spurs look to back the Italian in the transfer market.
Spurs are targeting multiple areas, with goalkeepers, centre-backs, full-backs, central midfielders and forwards among the positions they aim to strengthen. Conte used Perisic as a left-back during his time at Inter after bringing him back into the group.
Why do Spurs sign Perisic?
Lyall Thomas, Sky Sports News Deputy News Editor:
“It’s not often Tottenham invest in players over 30, let alone 33 – but on a free transfer this one makes sense.
“First of all, he’s someone Antonio Conte wants, having previously worked with him at Inter Milan, so he’s a great way to support the manager early in the window.
“But from a football point of view it makes even more sense. Perisic is experienced, at the top of the game. He’s a winner. He won the Champions League with Bayern Munich and the Serie A title with Conte in 2021.”
“Also, despite his age, he is still in top form and can be dangerous in different positions. Conte turned him into a left-back in their title-winning side, but he can also provide cover and competition.” for Heung-Min Son and Dejan Kulusevski in the front positions.
“Conte is looking to add experienced minds to his squad so Tottenham can compete on all fronts next season and Perisic will bring that in abundance.”
“Spurs are clearly supporting Conte this summer”
Sky Sports News reporter Paul Gilmour:
“Following the news that Tottenham have injected £150m in equity into the club, the club are clearly backing Antonio Conte in the transfer market this summer.
“They will target multiple positions including goalkeeper, centre-back, full-back, central midfielder and a forward. Up to six or seven players could come. They need to find the right balance with homegrown players. There is an imbalance at the moment.” this area.
“Conte wants more depth in the squad and he also wants to add experienced players, a change from the last time Spurs were targeting younger players.
“There are some at the club who feel it is inaccurate that they have not spent in the past, but there is confirmation that they have not always gotten recruitment right.
“Fabio Paratici can’t go wrong at the club at the moment. The additions of Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski have given confidence that they are finally getting it right in this area.
“A lot of homework is being done on the player’s skills and character. Spurs recently turned down a chance to sign a talented Premier League player because their research revealed concerns he could be a disruptive influence.”
Neville: Conte did a brilliant job
Sky Sports Expert Gary Neville has praised head coach Conte for delivering Champions League football for Tottenham next season.
Speaking of The Gary Neville PodcastThe former Manchester United defender said: “We were at the North London Derby 10 days ago and even if Arsenal had beaten Newcastle I still think Antonio Conte would have stayed based on what he experienced that night. Where do you want to get that from? element of competition, these atmospheres in Europe at this time?
“He did an excellent job at Tottenham, he was helped by the Manchester United capitulation and Arsenal’s fall, but he did a good job and he always wanted to do it. I am very sure he is not the right manager for Manchester United but you can say someone is not the right manager for your club but he is still a great manager.
“The others have Tuchel, Conte, Klopp and Guardiola – they are animals, they win trophies all the time. Standing on the sidelines, they can almost eat you alive with their presence and aura. The rest have a long way to go.”
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