Who is the River Plate and Argentina midfielder linked with Tottenham Hotspur?

River Plate

Leonardo Ponzio has already been around the block once and now it is becoming apparent that Spurs are keeping tabs on the 30-year-old who has forced his way back into the Argentina fold since returning to River Plate in January.

Tottenham Hotspur have been linked with a bizarre transfer deal after it was revealed they are reportedly keen on signing River Plate midfielder Leonardo Ponzio. The Argentine would be an odd signing considering his age; at 30-years-old he would hardly be a product for the future but considering his recent good form for River Plate his form may warrant another crack at Europe.

So what can we tell you about Leonardo Ponzio? Here are 10 facts...

1. Ponzio started his career with Newell’s Old Boys based in Rosario. Other names to have started their footballing education at the club include Gabriel Batistuta, Gabriel Heinze and perhaps most famously Lionel Messi.

2. At just 21 he moved to Real Zaragoza for the first of his two stints at the club where he cemented himself as a first team regular where he won the Spanish Cup in 2004.

3. In 2007 he made the move back to Argentina with River Plate and won the Tourneo Clausura in 2008.

4. He returned to Real Zaragoza after just two years back in his homeland and helped them escape the second tier of Spanish football during his time at the club.

5. In January he returned to River Plate due to personal reasons and has enjoyed the best form of his career to date which has seen interest in his cut-price services rise across Europe.

6. As a youth player he helped Argentina win the World Youth Cup in 2001 where he featured in all seven fixtures alongside recognisable names such as Fabricio Coloccini, Julio Arca and Javier Saviola.

7. He made his debut for the Argentina national side in 2003 against Mexico.

8. He has since gone on to earn just seven caps with his most recent appearance coming against Brazil in October.

9. While he is best known as a central midfielder he is also equally adept at playing in either the left or right full-back positions.

10. When asked about the link with Tottenham Hotspur Leonardo stated:

"I knew that some people came to watch me in the match against Boca and I think in another game too. Nobody spoke with me about a possible transfer or real interest. Anyway, regarding my future, I am very comfortable where I am and I feel respect. I would like to take advantage of this moment. What comes for my career from now on will be analysed. At my age I have to analyse everything with my family. It's not a year yet since I came back from Spain. Therefore, if an offer arrives, River and me will have to analyse it.’’

While he is in good form in Argentina at the moment it remains doubtful if many Tottenham fans would welcome the signing of a 30-year-old utility man to strengthen the squad.

Have you seen Ponzio play? Would you like to see him at The Lane?

image: © DanielHP

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