Scout Reports

FPL new signings: Perisic can be superb defender pick in 2022/23

Ivan Perisic has become Tottenham Hotspur’s first signing ahead of the 2022/23 season, and will join the Premier League side once his contract at Inter Milan expires next month.

The 33-year-old has signed a two-year deal and is reunited with Antonio Conte, who he worked with when the Spurs boss led Inter to the 2020/21 Serie A title.

“It’s a privilege to work again with a coach like this. We did well at Inter, won the league after 10 or 11 years, it was a perfect year. I’m really happy to see him again. I think we’re going to do some good things here in England.

He’s living football, every minute, every hour, every day, even when he’s sleeping, he’s thinking about football! He’s so passionate. He wants to win. I like his character and I know we’re going to do a great job here.” – Ivan Perisic on Antonio Conte

Perisic brings a wealth of experience with him to north London, having played for the likes of Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund, Wolfsburg and Inter, but where does he fit in at Spurs and what impact will he have in Fantasy Premier League (FPL)?

We’ll attempt to answer those questions below.

THE HISTORY

SeasonTeamAppsGoalsAssists
2021/22Inter Milan3587
2020/21Inter Milan3245
2019/20Bayern Munich2246
2018/19Inter Milan3484
2017/18Inter Milan371111
2016/17Inter Milan36119
2015/16Inter Milan3475
2015/16Wolfsburg210
2014/15Wolfsburg2456
2013/14Wolfsburg33105
2012/13Wolfsburg1121
2012/13Borussia Dortmund1421
2011/12Borussia Dortmund2873
2010/11Club Brugge27168
2009/10Club Brugge2366
2008/09KSV Roeselare1752

Above: Ivan Perisic’s league appearances and attacking returns via Transfermarkt

Ivan Perisic began his career in the youth academies of Hajduk Split and Sochaux before a short loan spell at KSV Roeselare in Belgium.

In 2009, he joined Club Brugge where, in only his second season, he was the league’s top-scorer and was named Belgium’s Footballer of the Year.

Those performances earnt him a move to Germany in 2011, where he won the Bundesliga and DFB-Pokal in his first season at Borussia Dortmund, before adding a second German Cup and DFL-Supercup following a move to Wolfsburg in 2013.

Two-and-a-half years later, he signed for Inter, starting games and scoring regularly for the Italian club, hitting double-figures for Serie A goals in 2016/17 and 2017/18.

However, when Antonio Conte first arrived at the Nerazzurri in 2019 he allowed Perisic to move to Bayern Munich on loan because, he explained, the Croatian was not willing to perform the defensive duties he wanted him to carry out.

“We sent Perisic to Bayern because he was not prepared to do the defensive work I had asked for.” – Antonio Conte

Whilst at Bayern, he won three trophies including a memorable Bundesliga and Champions League double, with Conte declaring his time in Germany a year well-spent.

“He returned with a different mentality. He showed that he has extraordinary characteristics and needs to believe in himself more. The moment he started doing that, he started to play. He can be even more decisive.” – Antonio Conte

Back for the 2020/21 season, Perisic established himself as an aggressive wing-back under Conte, making 32 league appearances – 20 as a starter – registering four goals and five assists as Inter won the Serie A title.

Simone Inzaghi replaced Conte at Inter for the 2021/22 campaign, and he used the Croatian even more – the 2844 minutes of league action was Perisic’s second busiest season in Italy. In another successful campaign, he registered eight goals – including one penalty – and seven assists in Serie A with Inter finishing runners-up, also lifting the Coppa Italia and Supercoppa Italiana.

He has also been a key international player for Croatia, making 113 appearances for his country to date, scoring 32 goals.

PLAYING STYLE/UNDERLYING STATS

Perisic has played much of his career as an out-and-out winger, with his two-footedness enabling him to be effective on both flanks.

“Perisic is the kind of winger that is different to the others. Normally you look at wingers and they are just fast and creative. But he is also physical, very physical. Fantastic in the air.” – Jose Mourinho

However, he has predominantly featured as a left wing-back these past two seasons, a role he has excelled in under Conte and Inzaghi, and that is where he will be expected to spend a great deal of his time at Spurs.

Above: Ivan Perisic’s touch heatmaps under Conte in 2020/21 (left) and Inzaghi (right) in 2021/22, via Sofa Score

From that position, Perisic racked up 0.44 non-penalty expected goals plus expected assists per 90 minutes under Conte in 2020/21, more than any other Serie A defender using StatsBomb’s model.

For context, Trent Alexander-Arnold’s tally in 2021/22 was also 0.44, with Reece James and Joao Cancelo on 0.40 and 0.26 respectively.

With both his dribbling and crossing ability, Perisic is a huge threat with the ball on the left-wing.

IVAN PERISIC: SERIE A 2021/22 CREATIVE STATS
TotalSerie A rank
Assists712th=
Key passes per game1.616th=
Crosses per game1.113th=
xA8.03rd

WHERE PERISIC FITS IN AT SPURS

Conte on Kulusevski's benching, rampant Leicester and why Ward started over Schmeichel: FPL notes 1

“I’m going to bring, first of all, a lot of hard work. I like to work a lot, I like to work for the team because only like this you can win something important. I can play several positions in the system Tottenham is playing now. I will bring a lot of experience as well, I’ve played for a lot of great clubs and, like I said, I can’t wait to start to play, to train and give my best.” – Ivan Perisic

Although he can offer a threat from a variety of positions, Conte converted Perisic into a left wing-back in their title-winning season at Inter, which seems his most likely place in Spurs’ XI.

The Croatian personifies the high-intensity style Conte demands from his wing-backs, and offers a more experienced attacking threat on the left, which could be especially important if they sell Sergio Reguilon this summer.

Ryan Sessegnon has improved in the last few months, which does suggest Perisic might not be a completely nailed-on week-in, week-out starter, but at the same time, signing a player of his profile and age suggests he will rack up plenty of minutes in the coming season.

After beating Arsenal to fourth place, Spurs will also need more numbers and quality on their return to the Champions League.

The expectation is that Perisic will be used exclusively as a wing-back by Conte, but he can also provide cover for Son Heung-min and Dejan Kulusevski in the attacking positions behind Kane.

IS PERISIC WORTH BUYING IN FPL?

What impact can Ivan Perisic have as an FPL asset at Tottenham Hotspur?

Perisic has the potential to be an excellent Fantasy asset, providing he is classified as a defender, which he probably should be based on his last two seasons.

He has proved himself at Inter to be a very dangerous wing-back in the final-third, and even at £6.0m, would receive plenty of Fantasy attention, especially if the fixtures fall kindly at the start of the season.

Will he play every game? Perhaps not at 33-years-old, but the fact he racked up a serious number of minutes in 2021/22 is encouraging, and whilst he will surely rotate with Sessegnon at times, it might be less than some think.

And if starting the potential is clear: all four of Conte’s wing-backs from his time in charge at Spurs (Gameweek 11 onwards) rank in the top 13 defenders for expected goal involvement (xGI) per 90 minutes:

Let’s not forget the points potential at the other end of the pitch, too: since Conte took charge, only Manchester City and Liverpool have kept more clean sheets. Spurs are also the third-best side for fewest ‘big chances’ conceded in that time.

So, there is plenty to get excited about then, if Perisic joins FPL as a defender that is.


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73 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Giggs Boson
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 10 Years
    25 days, 19 hours ago

    Thanks for the article.

    This guy could be a huge fantasy player while Spurs only have one game a week. As soon as the schedule gets congested, his xMins might become too low.

    Interesting addition!

    1. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
      • 9 Years
      25 days, 19 hours ago

      With the World Cup this season and CL games having to be completed earlier all big teams will be rotation nightmare

      1. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        25 days, 18 hours ago

        Add 5 subs rule to this equation without forgetting Sessegnon 🙁 I fear that he is going to be rotation nightmare to own barring midterm injury to Sessegnon. He is most likely going to be 5.5 (6.0) def with serious 1 pt cameo risk.

        1. Giggs Boson
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 10 Years
          25 days, 4 hours ago

          Surely 5 subs is going to increase the number of starts for key players?

          Managers are still going to want their best players on the pitch as much as possible, but this gives them more opportunity to rest then in the last 30 mins.

          1. Camzy
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 12 Years
            25 days, 3 hours ago

            This. It's really lazy for people to say that having the 5 sub rule makes players more rotation prone when it actually could be the opposite.

            More managers will start their best team every week knowing they can rest key players if the game state is favorable.

            1. Deulofail
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 6 Years
              25 days, 1 hour ago

              You've just described rotation

              1. Giggs Boson
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 10 Years
                24 days, 23 hours ago

                In-match rotation maybe, but the rotation we're mostly interested in is surrounding starts.

                Starts should increase for key players, thanks to the 5 sub rule.

      2. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        25 days, 18 hours ago

        Then there is a case to look at mid table teams with attacking wing backs. Depending on fixtures likes of Cash and Coufal for example could be options.

        1. Andy_Social
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          25 days, 8 hours ago

          Cucurella if Brighton can hang onto him

  2. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
    • 9 Years
    25 days, 19 hours ago

    The next Zvonimir Boban

  3. Baps hunter
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    • 4 Years
    25 days, 18 hours ago

    Thx for the article. How does it feel to write these for such a small audience? Maybe these ones need to be republished later?

    1. avfc82
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 12 Years
      25 days, 4 hours ago

      Yeah, we'll probably give them an update once prices/fixtures are released and republish 🙂

  4. Little Red Lacazette
    • 5 Years
    25 days, 18 hours ago

    Luke Shaw was all the hype last pre-season that turned into a thunderous dud. Who do you expect not to do well that looks to be gaining a FPL fan base this early?

    1. Inazuma X1
      • 4 Years
      25 days, 18 hours ago

      Callum Wilson

      1. Little Red Lacazette
        • 5 Years
        25 days, 18 hours ago

        Lol. Who?

    2. Baps hunter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      25 days, 18 hours ago

      I don't think we are going to see another Luke Shaw this season. If we had WC before start of the season, we would/could likely see similar hype. Yet, Perisic is in contention if Spurs have good enough fixtures to start with.

    3. Andy_Social
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 9 Years
      25 days, 8 hours ago

      I don't know who's 'gaining a FPL fan base' right now, but I'd expect any hyped incomers to United over the summer to struggle early doors.

  5. Inazuma X1
    • 4 Years
    25 days, 18 hours ago

    Newcastle have reached an agreement for the transfer of Hugo Ekitike from Reims for €36 million and €10 million in bonuses

    1. Baps hunter
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      25 days, 18 hours ago

      Young forward. For the future? I can't see him challenging fit Callum Wilson. But he could be backup?

    2. RedRo
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      25 days, 18 hours ago

      19 years old. I love what they're doing. Signed whatever they needed to keep them in the league in January. Now we're going to see them sign young players that'll hold their value, knowing they're going to have to stay within FFP rules.

    3. Giggs Boson
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 10 Years
      25 days, 17 hours ago

      Makes sense to sign a Wilson protégé rather than a ready made star. Howe's clearly not interested in playing two up top, and he said recently that he considers Wilson a key player.

      "I think a lot of the problems with two strikers, and why I wouldn’t say gone out of the game, but probably going out of the game, is because off the ball, you have big spaces. Your midfield and back four find themselves with huge spaces to defend. It’s not something I’d say that I’d never do, but it’s certainly not something that’s in my immediate plans to play that way." - Howe

      1. zeslinguer
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        25 days, 15 hours ago

        I think Ekitike has played and will play on the right rather than rival Wilson up too. On the other hand I wouldn’t be surprised if a Wilson replacement was brought in still.

        I think the Newcastle hierarchy will be in the market for a proper striker but won’t be held to ransom and will go into the season without one if the deal isn’t right. From what I’ve read a striker was priority but Wilson’s end of the season form has made them think twice.

        1. Baps hunter
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 4 Years
          25 days, 15 hours ago

          Wilson, when fit, shouldn't be their biggest concern. Haven't been watching them enough, but they lack talent somewhere in midfield. They need someone like Eriksen (but probably younger version of him).

          1. zeslinguer
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 6 Years
            25 days, 14 hours ago

            He’s never fit though. I’d imagine an LB and RW (probably Ekitike) come in for sure, plus very likely a CB and a midfielder (either a DM replacing Shelvey or an RCM and Bruno dropping into the Shelvey role), then maybe a striker and/or keeper depending on deals/who they move out

            1. Giggs Boson
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              • 10 Years
              25 days, 4 hours ago

              Why did they sign Wood?

              I guess as backup to Wilson... but he's a very different type of player and he seems like someone who needs a partner up top with him, something Howe doesn't like doing. Bizarre.

              1. zeslinguer
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 6 Years
                25 days, 2 hours ago

                I think everyone at the club including Wood knows he was signed out of necessity (desperation if you want to be less charitable). No one was wanting to part with a striker in January and Wilson remember only was fit for the last three games of the season.

                The game before Wood signed Newcastle we’re beat at home in the cup by Cambridge (actually only they, Liverpool and city have won at saint James’s this year). But in the game we played Fraser, Almiron and asm up front. So we needed someone up front. Anyone really, but Wood did tick a lot of boxes - someone to aim for for crosses and to relieve pressure with long balls when defending, someone to lead the press, he had premier league experience and it hurt Burnley by signing him.

                Tbh the biggest impact he made initially was allowing ASM to be freed up and cut in from the left. Very different situation this summer of course in terms of what the ownership want/need.

              2. Ooh Ah Cantona
                • 1 Year
                25 days, 1 hour ago

                As horrid as it sounds, I'd say Newcastle signed Wood more to cripple relegation rivals Burnley, rather than strengthen their own team

                1. SonnyPikey
                    24 days, 22 hours ago

                    yes cos his goals were so badly missed...oh wait he scored 3.

      2. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
        • 9 Years
        25 days, 17 hours ago

        The next Mbappe

    4. NateDog
      • 1 Year
      25 days, 18 hours ago

      I feel like there will be a point in the season where he'll be a good option (probably due to Sessegnon needing a break or being injured), but I don't see him going straight into that first XI. He's a solid player and has won a fair few honours, but he is 33 and has spent the majority of the last decade in the Bundesliga with the last 2 seasons in Italy. Let's see how he copes with the physicality and pace of the PL first.

      1. RedRo
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        25 days, 18 hours ago

        I can see him getting a good 25 - 30 PL games over the course of the season. I don't think he'll just be filling in for Sessegnon when he's injured/needing a break - could also see him filling in for Kulu/Son for example. Sessegnon also wasn't 1st choice for large parts of last season - maybe the arrival of Perisic allows for another season of Sessegnon being eased into the team.

        1. Andy_Social
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 9 Years
          25 days, 8 hours ago

          Conte loves him. He didn't cough up just to park him on the bench. I think he'll get full value out of Perisic this season, and they'll both have done their time at Spurs come the end of the season.

      2. Camzy
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 12 Years
        25 days, 3 hours ago

        Perisic will be first choice. You don't sign a 33 year old Serie A winner and world cup finalist to be backup to Ryan Sessegnon.

        1. NateDog
          • 1 Year
          25 days, 2 hours ago

          He's a player that can play in a variety of positions and can provide backup / an alternative to a number of other players. It's hardly insulting to say he'll be a squad player or will rotate at his age and considering he hasn't experienced the PL before when you have a much younger option at LWB that has performed well towards the end of the season and that will likely be at the club for a lot longer.

    5. Zim0
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      25 days, 17 hours ago

      Isn't Doherty a safer option? He was also destroying ranks right and left before he got injured.

      1. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        25 days, 15 hours ago

        I'd think so now. However, the transfer window is still open and Doherty may get competition.

    6. lilmessipran
      • 9 Years
      25 days, 15 hours ago

      Son not being nominated for the PFA players of the year award is ridiculous.. Individual football awards are such a scam.

      1. lilmessipran
        • 9 Years
        25 days, 15 hours ago

        Player*

      2. RedRo
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        25 days, 15 hours ago

        And yet Kane was nominated. I’m so confused.

        1. Ruth_NZ
          • 7 Years
          25 days, 13 hours ago

          And yet only a few weeks ago you were adamant that Son was a downgrade on Kane. 😆

          1. RedRo
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            25 days, 13 hours ago

            Eh? Are you OK mate?

            1. RedRo
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              25 days, 13 hours ago

              Ah, I do know who you are - you’re the guy I called out for having a lot of teams!

              1. Ruth_NZ
                • 7 Years
                25 days, 13 hours ago

                Did you? Another thing you got wrong then. 😆

                1. RedRo
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  25 days, 12 hours ago

                  Lol, I’d deny it too mate.

      3. BUZZBOMB
        • 7 Years
        25 days, 13 hours ago

        Scandalous.

      4. McGurn
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 12 Years
        25 days, 11 hours ago

        Player of the season by a mile! Wow, this is ridiculous!

      5. Baps hunter
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        25 days, 5 hours ago

        Scandal... Or maybe just forget the PFA after this. If I were to win it, I would happily admit that Son is better than me (and never be nominated again).

      6. NateDog
        • 1 Year
        25 days, 5 hours ago

        While I agree, this was voted for by the players. I think if anything it shows up the poor organisation of this award. Should be voted for once the season is over. The window is open too early and for too long and still closes too early. I think Graeme Le Saux was interviewed by TheAthletic recently regarding it and said how each team tends to have a nominated person to go around to each player urging them to get their vote in before it closes and that they'd have to push a lot of players to do it. The system needs to be reworked, I think for the most part it can be good but if Ronaldo is there ahead of Son or Cancelo or Bernardo then there's a problem.

        1. circusmonkey
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 11 Years
          25 days, 29 mins ago

          The system is decades out of date, it should be moved online so it can be done in a few days at the end of the season.

    7. Freshy
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 11 Years
      25 days, 13 hours ago

      Spurs need to sign the guy in my avatar.Get him and solve the biggest problem.

      1. The Knights Template
        • 8 Years
        25 days, 10 hours ago

        Surely they’re better off signing a Na’vi from Avatar?

      2. diesel001
        • 5 Years
        25 days, 4 hours ago

        Nah. Priority is backup for Hojbjerg who isn't Skipp, a backup for Kane and a young CB

        Lloris
        Dier Romero Davies
        Doherty Bentancur Hojbjerg Perisic
        Kulusevski Kane Son

        Forster
        Sanchez ????? Tanganga
        Royal Winks ????? Sessegnon
        Bergwijn ????? Moura

        Sell: Reguilon, Rodon, Gil, Ndombele, Lo Celso

    8. McGurn
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 12 Years
      25 days, 11 hours ago

      Well done to Ukraine. Much better on the night. Thought the Hampden factor (over the Ukraine factor) would make the difference but I don't think Scotland really turned up. Should be a great game on Sunday.

      1. The Knights Template
        • 8 Years
        25 days, 10 hours ago

        Score prediction?

        1. Echoes
          • 1 Year
          25 days, 10 hours ago

          1-2 Ukraine

      2. Andy_Social
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        25 days, 8 hours ago

        I'm a Scotland supporter, I'm used to this. All sentiment aside, Scotland just weren't very good.

        1. The Knights Template
          • 8 Years
          25 days, 7 hours ago

          When I watch Scotland I always ask - where are the goals coming from?

      3. Old Man
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 10 Years
        25 days, 6 hours ago

        Although my predictions have been awful recently, I expect a very different game to last night.
        - Wales will now be pre-warned
        - Ukraine will suffer a bit an emotional/adrenaline letdown/regress
        - Wales are rested
        - Bale
        2-1 Wales

    9. Little Red Lacazette
      • 5 Years
      25 days, 8 hours ago

      Why are City so interested in Cucurella? Any Brighton fan(or not) insight?

      1. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
        • 9 Years
        25 days, 8 hours ago

        They've needed a proper LB for many seasons. Cucurella is a highly rated LB. He won POTY for Brighton

    10. Inazuma X1
      • 4 Years
      25 days, 7 hours ago

      Releaseeee theeeee gameeeeee

      1. The Knights Template
        • 8 Years
        25 days, 7 hours ago

        Inazuma XI’s in the house (release the hounds).

      2. Little Red Lacazette
        • 5 Years
        25 days, 7 hours ago

        Wait for PL fixtures first.

      3. Bavarian
        • 4 Years
        25 days, 6 hours ago

        Not before July

      4. FFS Ultras are for Kinnear
        • 9 Years
        25 days, 5 hours ago

        We need a rest

    11. DavidBW
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      25 days, 4 hours ago

      Happy Jubilee FFS UK members.

      Although I detest the monarchy and our awful government let’s make the most of the street parties. 4 days off here we go.

      1. The Units
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 12 Years
        25 days, 2 hours ago

        Yawn

        1. DavidBW
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          25 days, 59 mins ago

          Party party party

      2. FPL Pillars
        • 5 Years
        24 days, 23 hours ago

        Glass half empty? There’s plenty of worse places

    12. St Pauli Walnuts
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      25 days, 3 hours ago

      Can someone please snap those two wee curls hanging down on Ivan's bonce. Playing havoc with my OCD.

    13. RedLightning
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 11 Years
      25 days, 1 hour ago

      https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/61648608
      An interesting article about Charles Reep (1904-2002), a pioneer of football analysis who effectively invented an early version of xG.