Tottenham Hotspur have been linked with a move from Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez, with the Argentina international reportedly available for a reduced fee this summer.
According to Italian publication Corriere della Sera, Inter have dropped their asking price to between £50m and £55m if the striker were to leave Italy this season. Martinez has proven to be one of Serie A’s most prolific goalscorers, with the 24-year-old enjoying his best season at Inter last year under current Spurs boss Antonio Conte.
Tottenham have recruited heavily from Italy in recent windows, with summer additions Cristian Romero and Pierluigi Gollini arriving from Atalanta and Juventus duo Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski both signing in January. Spurs have also been linked with Paulo Dybala for the upcoming season as his contract with Juventus expires but Inter reportedly led the hunt for Dybala and paved the way for Martinez to leave the club this season.
ALSO READ: How Paulo Dybala could perform next season if he signs with Tottenham Hotspur
So if Martinez were to join Spurs in the summer, what influence could he have under his former boss Conte? Could Argentina attacker help Spurs win silver next season? We simulated the 2022/23 season with Martinez in the Spurs squad and that’s what happened.
We ‘signed’ Lautaro Martinez for Tottenham in July 2022
To set up this simulation, we used the Football Manager 2022 editor to arrange for Martinez to join Spurs at the start of the 2022/23 season, using FM22 to run the simulation. This is what the 24-year-old’s profile looks like in-game on FM22.
Described by FM22 as an elite forward, Martinez has some incredible in-game stats, Determination (19), Agility (18), Aggression (18) and Prowess (18) being his best attributes. Let’s take a look at how Martinez fared during the 2022-23 season after signing for Spurs in July 2022.
Although Martinez competed with Kane and Son for forward roles at the club, Martinez was viewed by Conte as a regular starter, with the Argentine making 46 appearances for Spurs. In those 46 games, he recorded 23 goals and two assists in three different competitions.
Martinez has been most productive for Spurs in the Premier League, where the Argentine has scored 20 goals in 37 games and finished the season as the Premier League’s top scorer. He achieved his best average mark in the UEFA Europa League, where he managed a rating of 7.58 per game.
Overall, Martinez averaged a 7.18 rating per game across all competitions and picked up the MOTM award twice. Only Heung-Min Son and his summer colleague Samir Handanovic from Inter played more often than the 24-year-old.
At the end of the 2022/23 season, Football Manager compiled a best overall Spurs XI based on performances, stats and other metrics. This is how Tottenham’s best XI looked at the end of the 2022/23 season as predicted by Football Manager 2022.
Full Spurs Best XI (5-2-1-2): Handanovic; Royal, Romero, Dier, Sanchez, Reguilon; Bentancur, Hojbjerg; Son; Kane, Martinez.
New signings Martinez and Handanovic made Spurs the best XI for the 2022/23 season, with Son shifting to an attacking midfielder to accommodate Martinez. Dejan Kulusevski was signed but did not field the best eleven despite scoring 15 goals.
How have Spurs fared in league and cup competitions after signing Martinez at the start of the 2022/23 season?
Tottenham’s results from the 2022/23 simulation
Spurs had a very impressive season in the Premier League in sim, finishing fourth in the table. Conte’s side lost just seven games all season, with two of those losses coming in their last five games. It was a very tight season in the Premier League, with Spurs finishing just a point ahead of Man City in fifth place and just seven behind Liverpool in first place. How have Spurs fared in the cups after securing UEFA Champions League football for the following season?
Spurs managed to lift a trophy in the simulated season, with Martinez scoring the third and final goal in the FA Cup Final after Son and Kane put Conte’s side in the driver’s seat against Brentford. Their worst cup run was in the Carabao Cup, where they lost to Aston Villa on penalties in the third round with a heavily rotated squad.
After qualifying for the Champions League, Spurs made it through to the Round of 16 but went down 3-2 on aggregate at Martinez’s former side Inter. Their only success was the FA Cup where Spurs beat Brentford 3-0 thanks to Kane, Son and Martinez to lift the trophy.
Overall, this Football Manager sim predicts that if Spurs signed Martinez ahead of the 2022-23 season, the forward could become one of Spurs’ biggest scoring threats, potentially blossoming alongside Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son. The striker’s performances in the big game earned the 24-year-old a goal in the FA Cup final and helped Conte’s side finish in the top four.
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