The report claims that the north London club believe the youngster has the potential to make the breakthrough at first-team level in the top flight in the future, but pulled out of a deal after their offer fell short of the Saints’ asking price.
Fabio Paratici must now forget about a swoop for the 18-year-old, though, as Antonio Conte could save his compatriot millions by bringing Destiny Udogie back into the fold next season.
Speaking to Tottenham’s website, Paratici hailed the gem’s talent by saying: “He is a wing-back, he has a really, really, really good left foot, offensive phases are really good, he creates a lot of opportunities to score, make assists so he’s a complete player.”
The young left-back is currently out on loan after joining Spurs on a permanent deal last summer, and his form in 2022/23 so far suggests that he could be an excellent option for Conte next term.
The Italian full-back has averaged a Sofascore rating of 6.89 across 16 appearances and chipped in with two goals and two assists, whilst creating 1.4 chances per game for his team-mates, which would place him in the top five creators at Tottenham.
Along with his attacking contributions, Udogie has also made a whopping 3.8 tackles and interceptions per match – 1.2 more per outing than any Spurs full-back has managed in the Premier League this season.
This is not a flash in the pan for the youngster, either, as he scored five goals and set up four in 29 Serie A starts for Udinese last term. This shows that the gem has proven himself to be an attacking talent from a full-back position, suiting Conte’s wing-back system.
He still has the next four months or so to continue playing in Italy, but his current statistics suggest that Conte should be looking forward to welcoming him back to Spurs next season.
If the head coach can bring Udogie back to N17 and get him performing to those levels in the Premier League, then there would be no need for another young player in that position to come in, which would save Paratici from needing to spend millions on a new signing such as Small.