Tottenham have Nicolo Zaniolo swap deal possibility after AC Milan pull plug on two deals

Kane heaps praise on Antonio Conte for impact at Tottenham

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Tottenham could use Japhet Tanganga or Sergio Reguilon in a swap deal for Nicolo Zaniolo after their proposed moves to AC Milan fell through. The pair were favourites of current Roma boss Jose Mourinho during his time at White Hart Lane and he may be tempted to work with them again should Spurs offer them for the Italian midfielder. 

Zaniolo has made 111 appearances for Roma in all competitions since joining from Inter Milan in 2018. His career in the Italian capital has been somewhat hampered by injuries with the 23-year-old suffering two ACL tears within a year. However, the Giallorossi could be open to letting him leave after they announced the shock signing of Paulo Dybala. 

However, this does not appear to have deterred Antonio Conte who is said to be keen on bringing the attacking midfielder to North London. There has been rumoured interest in the player all summer with the club’s sporting director Fabio Paratici reportedly offering centre-back Joe Rodon plus £25m in exchange for the Italian earlier in the window. 

The Serie A side rejected the offer as they are holding out for a figure closer to £40m and were not interested in the Welsh defender. However, the Lilywhites could attempt to move for the midfielder again as they look to add to their attacking options.

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Given their apparent aim to bring down the price of the Italy international they could seek to once again offer some of their current assets in exchange for the star. Current players Sergio Reguilon and Japhet Tanganga were reportedly attracting interest from AC Milan however they are now said to be pursuing Abou Diallo instead according to Gianluca Di Marzio. 

As a result, Spurs could now other the two out of favour men in exchange for Zaniolo. The pair are known to be well thought of by Mourinho from his time at Tottenham. The 59-year-old gave Tanganga his first team debut in 2019 and consistently chose him as part of his defence. The ex-Chelsea boss also famously gave Reguilon a special ham for Christmas in 2020 when he heard he would be spending the holiday alone. 

The left-back still remembers the gesture fondly recalling the story to Diario AS.

“I’d like you to know him the way I know him,” Reguilon told the publication when asked about Mourinho. “I could tell a thousand great stories.

“On Christmas Day, for example. He knows I’m on my own here. We arrived for training on the 25th at 3 p.m. and there’s a box in my place. I open it up and it’s a roast suckling pig, already cooked. He said to me ‘I know you’re alone at Christmas and that way you don’t have to cook dinner and you’ll eat well.’

“They’re little things that people don’t know about in the day-to-day. For a footballer, it’s really important that he keeps an eye on how you are, away from football.”

It remains to be seen whether or not Spurs will decide to offer their two defenders in exchange for Zaniolo, however, it is likely to be more favourably received than their original approach with Rodon.

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