After his starring role in Algeria’s African Cup of Nations win over South Africa, Sporting’s Islam Slimani has leapt to the top of Tottenham’s list of centre-forward targets, according to the Daily Express at least.
Richard Desmond’s rag reports that Spurs will sell, sell, sell in order to acquire the signatures of striker Slimani, Everton wide-forward Kevin Mirallas and Aston Villa midfielder Fabian Delph, with up to eight players being considered for White Hart Lane departures this January.
It’s not hard to figure out what Mauricio Pochettino and co see in the 26-year-old, who holds a very tidy strike rate of 15 goals in 38 Primeira Liga appearances, 17 of which were from the substitutes bench, since arriving at Estadio Jose Alvalade 18 months ago.
Respected website WhoScored.com handed Slimani the highest rating in Algeria’s 3-1 win over Bafana Bafana, with fellow scorer Faouzi Ghoulam, of Serie A’s Napoli, the only player to come close to his teammates’ 8.3 rating, on 8.1.
Christian Gourcuff’s men are 6/5 to see off Ghana in their next Group C fixture after the Black Stars went down 2-1 to Senegal last time out.
Andre Ayew put Avram Grant’s side in the lead with less than quarter of an hour on the clock, but Stoke striker Mame Biram Diouf scored one and assisted another for substitute Moussa Sow at the death.
WhoScored rated the former Manchester United striker by far the best player on the pitch with a score of 8.3, followed by teammates Kara Mbodj, who was linked with a move to Celtic last month, at 7.8 and erstwhile Arsenal target Idrissa Gueye at 7.3.
Lille holding-midfielder Gueye was reported to be in Arsene Wenger’s thoughts towards the end of last season, but hasn’t been among the recent mooted targets, such as William Carvalho and Sami Khedira, to fill the Gunners’ problem position.
Gueye started 37 of Les Dogues’ 38 Ligue 1 fixtures last term, when they conceded the second-fewest amount of goals in the division behind champions Paris Saint-Germain, so the 26-year-old probably warrants another look from Wenger.