Sky Sports reporter Michael Bridge reckons that Milan Skriniar could have helped Tottenham qualify for the Champions League last season.
Spurs were linked with the Slovakian defender, valued at £54m by Transfermarkt, last summer and held talks with Inter Milan over a possible transfer, according to Sky Sports, but nothing materialised and they ended up signing Joe Rodon instead.
What happened with Tottenham last season?
Jose Mourinho’s side eventually needed a final day victory at Leicester to book their place in the Europa Conference League, but they topped the Premier League in December and looked on course at worse to finish in the top-four.
Read More – January Transfer Window 2022: When does it open, when does it close and which players are going to move?
In fact, when they beat Arsenal at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, Mourinho’s men looked like they could mount a serious title challenge.
Prior to that result, Spurs had looked a well-oiled machine, scoring plenty and keeping it tight at the back.
But consecutive defeats to Liverpool and Leicester before Christmas proved the catalyst for their campaign to spiral badly out of control and they simply never recovered.
Tottenham did show spells of improvement late on during the season and eventually finished just five points behind fourth-place Chelsea, but their sheer number of defensive mistakes proved costly to their hopes of playing in the Champions League.
Arsenal ELIMINATE Leeds from Carabao Cup! Full reaction on The Football Terrace…
Mourinho’s Tottenham often dropped points late on in games and were in desperate need of a top centre-back, with Eric Dier and Davinson Sanchez simply not up to scratch.
Rodon, who joined on deadline day following their failure to sign Skriniar, did show signs that he could be at the required level, but Tottenham were crying out for someone of the Slovak’s calibre.
Bridge reckons that had Spurs been successful in their attempts to sign the Inter defender, they could have been playing in the Champions League right now.
What did Bridge say?
He told GIVEMESPORT: “Mourinho was so desperate for Skriniar from Inter Milan, and you wonder if Tottenham had got him, would they have finished fourth last season?
“They weren’t too far away; you have to remember that Tottenham were top in December.”
Would Skriniar have made the difference for Tottenham?
He would have certainly improved them, but even when one of Dier or Sanchez dropped out of the side and were replaced by the usually-reliable Toby Alderweireld, they still looked vulnerable.
It’s difficult to say whether signing Skriniar would have proved decisive, but given the gap to the top-four ended up being just five points, cutting out just a couple of those errors could have really been the difference in finishing fourth and seventh.