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True Price For Hojbjerg May Never Be Revealed
Monday, 10th Aug 2020 09:56

The Pierre Emile Hobjerg transfer saga looks to be heading to a finale this week with reports that the player will have a medical with Spurs with news that the two clubs have reached an agreement, but the reality is the details of that might never be revealed.

Spurs fans have been all over the internet over the past few months, seemingly feeling that they are going to be getting the new messiah with the dichotomy being that on one hand their club were claiming that he was the number one transfer target for Jose Mourinho and on the other Daniel Levy rating him so low in value that it wasn't far off Saints actually paying to let him go.

I may be only half joking here, the players agent is Mourhino's close friend Pini Zahavi a man no stranger to controversy and allegations of transfer tap ups with an odd number of his deals seemingly done with friends like Jose Mourinho whom he became close to at Chelsea.

Zahavi is an agent that does not work cheaply and someone will be paying him a cut of this transfer, that someone in 2010 was Portsmouth who owed him over £2 million when they went bust in that year.

Zahavi, together with his partner, assisted with the sale of Portsmouth to Alexandre Gaydamak in 2006 Earlier in his career, Zahavi had assisted with the sale of Beitar Jerusalem to Gaydamak's father, the Russian–Israeli businessman Arkady Gaydamak.

Zahavi worked on a number of deals for Portsmouth's new regime, bringing Avram Grant to the club, and signing a two-year scouting contract worth £800,000, and being involved in signing and selling a number of players.

When Portsmouth went into administration after multiple changes of owner in February 2010, Zahavi was among the 24 agents to whom the club owed almost £9 million. His own share of the outstanding amount totalled £2.074 million.

So this transfer was never going to be easy as Zahavi will want paying and want paying big, this is where the deal could become complicated in that who will pay him, Spurs as the buying club or Saints as the seller.

It seems that it could be Spurs given how low they are driving the price and how confident they have always been of signing the player and using that as leverage.

The moment Hojbjerg changed his agent to Zahavi back in January the Saints hierarchy new that the player was going to be off somewhere, it was only a question of where.

Let's be blunt, six months ago few people outside of Saints supporters would have known much about the Dane, most Spurs fans would have been hard ushed to recognise him in the street, yet suddenly he is Spurs number one transfer target and in they eyes of Spurs fans the missing link, why ? because the media is telling them so.

Prior to January the Hojbjerg story was one of an average Premier League player who at times had struggled to play regularly, as recently as 2017/18 he was completely ignored by Manuel Pellegrino and started only 19 games that season, the previous season, his first at the club he started 14.

2018/19 saw him come to the fore, but he was seen as a steady player rather than a game changer, most thought his passing and shooting skills let him down.

Last December his new contract at St Mary's looked a formality , as Saints surged up the table the signs were good "let's get it done" he tweeted when the matter was mentioned on Twitter.

But it all changed when he changed his agent and since then Saints knew that they were going to have to fight tooth and nail not to keep the player but get a reasonable fee for him, after all four years after he arrived at the club for £12 million he was now an established player at both Premier League and International level, that was worth more than a £12 million increase.

When £35 million was quoted no Saints supporter expected that, even £25 million was seen as bite your hand off time, but it wasn't as low as £15 million.

Most Saints fans would feel that £20 million is a good and fair price and let's be honest he is Jose Mourinho's number one target so that must be worth something.

Now it seems that a price has been agreed and I would suspect that it will have increased slightly from the £15 million quoted, the money on the nail will now perhaps be between £15-19 million and then after that add ons will push up the final price, should the conditions of the contract be met.

I would hazard a guess that we will get about £17 million plus add one bringing the full price to around £22 million should Hojbjerg meet several criteria, normally a set number of games played as well as perhaps a trophy won.

But we will never find out the exact number, both clubs will want to be coy, Daniel Levy at Spurs will want it to look as if he has got a bargain and Saints will want to make it look like they have driven a hard bargain.

But then there is Pini Zahavi and who will pay his fee ?

Photo: Action Images

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LordDZLucan added 10:28 - Aug 10
In any other wark of life it would be obvious who pays Pini Zahavi's fee - Hojbjerg himself. After all it is Hojbjerg that employed him. But for some reason the normal rules of business do not seem to apply to football. I'll be very annoyed if we end up funding an agent that has actively worked against the club's interests. That just isn't fair. For the life of me I don't understand why the powers that be in the game can't sort this anomaly out. Failing that It could be something that needs to be legislated on by Government.

ElijahK added 10:30 - Aug 10
Sheesh mate you’ve got it bang on here! Especially about all the spurs fans now thinking he’s amazing just because one fella once write a little thing about him then all the other media started to copy the story and do there little edits which then made all the spurs numpties think he’s some sort of Madrid! I mean the fact that he only had one year left on his contract meant that, personally I would be happy with the roughly 19mill transfer price, especially seeing how we’re going to get Walker-Peters as part of the deal. Because in the end he said he wanted to go and we all knew that at least one of the ‘top 6’ would come knocking and we’d loose him, but I’d certainly prefer us to get a full back (who has been playing quite regularly and was part of the post lockdown squad that was the 3rd best in the devision, in which Hojbjerg wasn’t part of) who does look at a decent level for us, along with a bit more money, for a midfielder who as the restart showed, we actually didn’t need that much. I mean as long as we get this McKennie, and even that Liverpool winger, then I’d certainly be happy with this transfer market and it would certainly have been the best one we’ve had for a while now!

nickdevon added 11:10 - Aug 10
Very accurateNick
I half liked Hojbjerg. He is very fit and tackles alot but other than than he is limited. He cant shoot , doesnt score and his passing is average. If Spurs feel its a fantastic bargin I think they have a big suprise coming. He is an average prem player.
I personally prefer Romeu. Hes much more comitted , he doesnt complain and other than some loose late tackles he is great in front of the back four. Need one more midfielder and we are looking good.

StEdmund added 11:17 - Aug 10
How good is Hojbjerg really? Pep wasn't interested and he knows him? Maybe we've sold Spurs a pup, only time will tell. But Walker Peters seems a good deal for us.

IanRC added 12:16 - Aug 10
I don’t know about you but I am really looking forward to seeing a Saints story that doesn’t mention bloody Spurs. That said I am a little concerned that the KWP transfer does not appear to be complete as yet.

dirk_doone added 12:36 - Aug 10
"BBC Sport understands Spurs will pay Southampton at least £3m more for Hojbjerg."

SanMarco added 13:00 - Aug 10
Totally agree Lord Lucan. The 'normal' rules of business don't apply to football but, sadly the 'abnormal' ones do. I think people of all political persuasions object to our money subsidizing obscenely rich people who, let's face it, don't produce anything. Corrupt incentive systems operate, just like those bank bonuses that caused the crash. Agents gain from their player moving as much as possible and screwing clubs and hence us for better deals which they take a chunk of. All the time knowing, just like the bankers and airlines and whatever, that for all the talk of free enterprise it will be us: the tax payers, the ticket buyers and the tv subscribers who will pick up the bill when it all goes wrong. WE are paying for Arsenal at the moment. It is absurd and obscene and it won't change any time soon.

Oh and if PEH ever becomes a great player I will send a postal order for a shilling to his agent...

derbydog added 13:35 - Aug 10
I wouldn’t disagree with most of what you say Nick BUT there is one significant factor you haven’t referred to — PEH had only one year left on his contract and the price a player goes for is to a large degree based on buying a player out of his contract. Thus KWP with I think two years left on his contract is priced at much closer to PEH than we might like. Had we renewed his contract last year we could have achieved more.

Not that I would be alarmist, but Bertrand has only 1 year left and his asking price will alarm you if he doesn’t choose to sign on again. C’est la vie, unfortunately.

60yearsandcounting added 14:01 - Aug 10
I've never been convinced at Mourinho's ability at buying players; if he could spot real ability why, at every club he has been at, do they fade and splutter once the stars there when he arrives begin to lose their abilities? Real Madrid, Chelsea twice. 3 years and he's out. And if he goes to a struggling club, why do they not improve? Man U perfect example. Remains to be seen at Spuds.
Agents? My first thought at any mention is "crooks"! Bit sweeping I know. But the ex car mechanics, low-grade clerks now living in luxury out of football is offensive and is something the football authorities should look at. But while the agents have cash to burn I can't see FIFA's top table giving up on a few pocket stretchers!!

perazi added 23:40 - Aug 10
I just can't understand the continuing "legs" of this story on this site. While the "true" price for Hojbjerg may not be known, it's fairly clear that it's somewhere in the 16 - 18m range (with add ons) and somewhere around 12m for KWP - a net gain
to Saints of 5-6m......an outstanding result for Saints and probably a deal Spurs are happy with too. The associated talk about agents commissions, connections with Mourhino and Levy's negotiations are just flotsam and jetsam. Any reasonable Saint's supporter will wish PEH well; he was a good player for Saints; has conducted himself with some respect for the Club and its processes, and in the end has fetched a fair price for a player inside the final 12 months of his contract. In return, Saints have a young, English RB in Walker-Peters who we had the benefit of seeing first hand before we stumped up the 12m for the permanent move. Keep in mind we received more than that sum for Matt Targett a year back, and by comparison it looks a fabulous outcome.

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