Pau Lopez was one of the surprising transfers of 2016 summer transfer window. Even though he came to Tottenham from Espanyol with a high reputation of being a talented goalkeeper even capable of replacing Hugo Lloris, the 22-year-old rarely got a look into the first-team. In fact, he was only utilised in the reserve division of the Premier league where he made 7 appearances.
He did not even feature in the EFL Cup or the FA Cup. There were suggestions that the goalkeeper might be allowed to end his loan spell with Spurs much earlier than scheduled. However, Tottenham had inserted a buyout clause in the loan deal, which would allow us to make the move a permanent one for around £6million. Espanyol chief executive Ramon Robert said:
“He is a Tottenham player until June 30, and they have an option to buy until that date, which they can exercise. If they does not, Pau is an Espanyol player.”
After having failed to make even the slightest impression in the first team, it was expected that Lopez would return to the Spanish football. However, latest developments indicate that Espanyol have given chairman Daniel Levy a few more days in order to take a decision on the player. The Spanish outfit have claimed that we have until June 30 in order to make a decision.
The young goalkeeper was deemed suitable for Spurs by none other than manager Mauricio Pochettino, who had worked with the 22-year-old when he was the manager at Espanyol. However, the extraordinary good form showed by Hugo Lloris means that Lopez has to play the waiting game at Tottenham.
Hugo Lloris happens to be one of the best goalkeepers in the Premier league and it would be a major gamble to let the Frenchman leave the club in the hope of establishing Lopez as the first-team regular. Espanyol are concerned about the decision by Spurs, as the player only has 12 months left on his contract.
Even if Spurs do not sign him, it is widely expected that the La Liga outfit will do everything that they can to in order to sell the player within this transfer window so as to avoid losing him for free transfer next summer.
Lopez got more first-team opportunities at Espanyol, as he has represented the club in 38 games since making his debut in 2014. It is reported that one of the stumbling blocks behind a deal could be the £6million fee that Spurs agreed while bringing him on loan. Certainly, paying such money for an unestablished young goalkeeper whose contract expires next summer would be nuts. We’ll have to wait to see what decision Spurs make here.