Tottenham missed out on signing Kim Min-jae earlier in his career.
Jose Mourinho has hit out at former club Tottenham after they failed to sign Kim-min Jae during his time in charge. The Portuguese has highlighted how far the defender has come since Spurs refused to match his asking price.
Kim has been often linked with a move to Tottenham, dating back to the summer of 2020. He was again rumoured to be a target in January 2021, six months before he left Chinese Super League club Beijing Guoan to join Fenerbahce.
The 26-year-old moved to Napoli last summer and has established himself as a top defender in Serie A. Napoli are 12 points clear at the top of the table and his performances at the back have had a big impact on that.
Mourinho’s Roma side face a trip to the Italian league leaders on Sunday. And ahead of the match, he has spoken of his admiration for Kim.
He revealed that he had private chats with Kim about a move to north London. However, Spurs were only prepared to pay half of his asking price.
Mourinho said: “I wanted to sign Kim Min-jae when I was at Tottenham. I had some FaceTime calls with him.
“Our bid was €5m, [Beijing Guoan] wanted €10m for Kim and for Tottenham, that wasn’t possible at that point. Now look at Kim and his level, he’s a top player.”
Napoli signed Kim from Fenerbahce for a fee of around £16m. But his value has rocketed following his performances this season.
He also impressed for South Korea at the World Cup in Qatar. Liverpool are among the teams to have been linked with him in recent months.
After the World Cup, Kim insisted he was happy at Napoli and says he attempts to avoid any speculation over his future. He said: “There are a lot of transfer stories around me, but I’ve only been at Napoli for six months.
“I’ve avoided interviews, and one of the reasons is that the rumours about me disturb me.” Kim signed a contract with Napoli until 2025, with the option to extend it by a further two years.
However, he has a release clause of around £40-£44m, which will become active this summer. Spurs may now be regretting not snapping him up for a much lower fee a couple of years ago.