According to rumors, Tottenham Hotspur is intensifying their efforts to sign Benfica defender Morato prior to the January transfer window. After running out of choices, Lilywhites head coach Ange Postecoglou plans to strengthen his defensive ranks this winter.
Micky van de Ven had a spectacular debut in north London after Tottenham sealed a £43 million purchase for him in the summer.
Nevertheless, the 22-year-old Dutchman is anticipated to be sidelined until mid-February due to a hamstring injury he sustained in November’s 4-1 loss to Chelsea.
Postecoglou has been forced to utilize Eric Dier, who was in the summer shop window, and full-backs Emerson Royal and Ben Davies as his center-backs in recent weeks.
However, after closely observing the Benfica star, Spurs are said to have set their sights on Morato as a center-back in the new year.
The Sun claims that Tottenham stepped up their interest in Morato by sending scouts to observe him play four times in November.
According to Portuguese publication O Jogo, the Lilywhites have since stepped up their pursuit and have designated him as a top target for next month.
Previously, Fulham and Nottingham Forest were interested in Morato. However, the former’s £21.4 million deal was turned down, and the latter’s £25.8 million approach was not successful.
After graduating from the Sao Paulo academy, the Brazil U23 international signed a £6.5 million contract in September 2019 to join Benfica’s youth divisions.
Two years later, he was elevated to the senior squad and has since begun to establish himself as a key member of Roger Schmidt’s team.
This season, Morato has made 15 appearances across all competitions, playing left and center back. He has also made five appearances in the Champions League.
Postecoglou has already stated that his first priority for the January transfer window is to sign a center-back.
Upon closer inspection, we did release Davinson Sanchez after the window closed. We were aware that we were assuming some risk,” Postecoglou stated last week.
“We couldn’t get the extra centre-back that we were trying to get in, and for the early part of the year, that was fine.