Details of Tottenham's failed €65m Bruno Fernandes bid revealed - including Premier League title bon
The midfielder looked set for a big-money switch during the off-season but has stayed with the Liga NOS side
Sporting president Frederico Varandas has revealed the details of Tottenham's failed bid to sign Bruno Fernandes in the summer transfer window, with Spurs having tabled an offer with bonus payments for winning the Premier League and Champions League.
Fernandes had been linked with a multitude of clubs in the off-season, including Real Madrid, Juventus and Manchester United among others, but the 24-year-old ultimately ended up staying put at the Estadio Jose Alvalade.
And Varandas, in an official statement released on the club's website, went into detail about the Lions' summer business and how the books were balanced while also strengthening the team.
“Offloading players who took up 25 per cent of our budget was extremely important,” the president wrote. “We lost only one undisputed starter and kept what is, for me, the best midfielder in Europe.
“It wasn't easy because they were being paid far above market value and it's a complicated process. Whoever is at the helm of Sporting has to be strict and responsible and should never add to expenses without first 'cleaning house'.
“We have managed to hold on to our highest-value player, Bruno Fernandes, and have been able to provide balance and better solutions. We think this group is more competitive and has more quality than last season.
“It was 'impossible' to retain Bruno Fernandes, but we did it. We prepared for his sale by putting a fair price on him, and we had bids, but the only serious offer was from Tottenham and that was €45 million (£40m/$50m) plus another €20m (£18m/$22m) in bonuses for winning the Premier League and the Champions League.
“Those are difficult objectives, so we chose not to accept.
“Bruno Fernandes proved to be not only a great player but a great professional and captain. The dignity and responsibility that he has always shown is exemplary.
“The day I turned down Tottenham's proposal, I came to the training ground and spoke to him. I told him why I declined the offer and why he would stay here beyond the end of the market and he understood perfectly.
“In addition, he also understood that the bid they offered us was not fair. He's not leaving, he's a Sporting player. Many European clubs want him and we know this is something we will always have to deal with.”
Another player whose name was mentioned several times across the summer was winger Raphinha, who eventually moved to Rennes in Ligue 1, but Varandas was always confident that he would hang onto one of the two sought-after stars.
“Were we going to sell Raphinha early in the market knowing that Real Madrid, Juventus or Atletico Madrid could give us €70m (£63m/$77m) for Bruno Fernandes? Were we in danger of losing both? No, because we could not say no to a proposal of €70m,” he said.
“We held on until last Wednesday and in Monaco, during the Europa League draw, we realised he was not going to be sold. So we retained Bruno Fernandes and moved on to another plan, which was to sell Raphinha and lose only one starter for €21m (£19m/$23m).”
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