This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
Everton and Tottenham have both been scouting Stoke City defender Harry Souttar, according to the Stoke Sentinel.
The Premier League duo are said to have had scouts watch the centre-back recently, with the January window not far away now.
But would he be a good signing for Spurs? And do they need him?
We quizzed our FLW writers for their thoughts…
For me, it was only a matter of time before Souttar caught the eye.
He deserves credit for the way he’s been patient and learnt from impressive loan spells away, particularly at Fleetwood Town.
He is now such a key player for Stoke. He’s commanding and a leader in the air, but he is also very good at playing out from the back and is comfortable at doing so.
Whilst he may not be an upgrade on the likes of Eric Dier and Davinson Sanchez at the moment, Spurs need depth at centre-back having lost Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen in recent seasons.
Souttar would be perfect.
I think he’s been excellent for Stoke City and the interest from Spurs is testament to his fine form.
He has taken on more of a leadership role this season and I think that has seen his confidence rocket to sky high levels.
He is brilliant on the ball and domineering in the air, which are clear and obvious qualities that Premier League sides look for.
Spurs signed Joe Rodon not long ago, but there is a feeling that they could do with some extra bodies in central defence.
Souttar could be the man to plug that gap, but he’s not the finished article just yet.
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Whilst Spurs aren’t exactly strong at centre-back, the step up from Stoke to Tottenham could perhaps be a bit too much too early for Souttar just yet.
Let’s remember even though he is 22 years old and has been a regular in the Potters line-up for over a year now, Souttar was playing League One football for Fleetwood Town just less than two years ago so he needs to be managed quite carefully.
It’s clear though that Souttar is only going to get better with experience – he’s part of a relatively young Stoke City back-line but he’s already a leader at his age and possesses a lot of qualities that will do him well in the Premier League when he eventually gets there.
Spurs already have one centre-back they signed from the EFL in Joe Rodon though and I’d be inclined to give him more of a chance before potentially splashing out on Souttar – even if he is extremely talented.
There are a few clubs I could see Souttar fitting in at a bit better than Tottenham – the likes of Wolves, Aston Villa and Southampton spring to mind but his ceiling is massive and Spurs have clearly spotted his talents, however I just don’t see him starting for them immediately so I don’t think it would be a great move for him if the opportunity arose.