Tottenham admit they were wrong not to sign Kim Min-jae despite Son Heung-min endorsement

Kim's made a fine start to life with Napoli
Kim's made a fine start to life with Napoli / ANP/GettyImages

Tottenham Hotspur have internally admitted that they were wrong not to follow up on initial interest in South Korea centre-back Kim Min-jae following his excellent start to life at Napoli, 90min understands.

90min reported in September 2020 of Spurs' interest in the defender, who was then on the books at Chinese Super League side Beijing Guoan, and that they had consulted Son over the prospect of such a deal.

However, despite Son's ringing endorsement of Kim, Tottenham were unwilling to spend more than £10m on a deal and he ended up signing for Fenerbahce the following summer instead.

After just one year in Turkey, Kim earned an €18m move to Napoli this summer, and he has played a starring role in their incredible start to the 2022/23 season.

Gli Azzurri sit top of the Serie A table and look a safe bet to finish first in their Champions League group in part thanks to their 4-1 thrashing of Liverpool in September, with Luciano Spalletti's side unbeaten in all competitions.

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90min understands that Tottenham have admitted to Son they were wrong to not push harder to sign Kim in the past and have apologised for ignoring his pleas to sign his international colleague.

At the end of the window in which Spurs pursued Kim, they ended up signing Joe Rodon from Swansea for a fee of around £11m. While he impressed in brief spells, the Wales international only made 24 appearances in the last two seasons and was loaned to French outfit Rennes in August.

Tottenham have since signed Cristian Romero, whose profile is similar to Kim's, and the Argentine has gone on to become a favourite of both the fans and current head coach Antonio Conte.