Joining from Genoa in a €31 million deal, the 21-year-old is one of the highest-rated young defenders in Europe.

In serious need of defensive reinforcements this January, Tottenham Hotspur's shrewd acquisition of Radu Dragusin is a move littered with upside.

Joining from Genoa in a €31 million deal, the 21-year-old, who was also attracting interest from a host of top European clubs such as Bayern Munich, is an ideal addition to supplement the fit-again first-choice central defensive pairing of Micky van de Ven and Cristian Romero.

"He's a good fit for us from a football perspective with some great attributes as a young player. After my chats with him, as a person too. He's got the right motivations about why Tottenham's the right club for him to make the next step," Ange Postecoglou explained.

"He'll fit in with the group well and we've got quite a few in his age bracket. We want to build a team that will grow together and hopefully, he'll be a part of that.

"Radu was one on the radar of being a good option for us, and from then on it was about getting as much information about him as a player and a person as we could. We had him scouted again, and from my mind, once we got down to the real details I thought he was the best option for us, and before the window opened we settled on that. I like his defensive and offensive attributes, there's a lot of improvement in him when he's only 21, and he fits the profile of the kind of player we want here."

The player himself was equally excited about signing for Spurs, with the Romanian international especially keen to join Postecoglou's team due to the high-octane brand of football they play.

Dragusin's heatmap and graphic

Aggressive, determined, extremely professional and ready for the challenge ahead after spending time honing his craft at Juventus before spells at Sampdoria, Salernitana and Genoa, he feels he's primed for the step up in class.

Despite debuting under Andrea Pirlo for Juventus in 2020, it was within Alberto Gilardino's Genoa where he truly stamped his mark on his way to going from strength to strength over the last 18 months both in Serie B, as Genoa won promotion, and then this term in Serie A.

Set to handle the rigors of the Premier League with aplomb, Dragusin relishes any duels both on the ground and in the air courtesy of his physicality, reading of the play and size.

Standing a towering 191 cm, the imposing stopper holds his own in heading confrontations, for he times his leap nicely, attacks the ball with authority and conviction, picks up the ball's trajectory quickly, and outmaneuvers adversaries more often than not.

Indeed, his aptitude in this regard also endures he's a major asset in both defensive and attacking set pieces, as well as dealing with crosses and deliveries into the box from all over and long clearances to help his team regain second balls.

Dragusin's defensive stats from Wyscout Player Report

Showing quality judgment when applying his interventions and handling opponents well in 1v1 situations, the way he backs himself to step out to make challenges, in combination with his quick reactions and anticipation from his powerful base posture, ensures he's a difficult man to outfox.

Dragusin's recoveries map from Wyscout Player Report

Doing a great job of tracking runners and providing covering support as well, where his solid pace and acceleration, plus hulking frame, see him keep up with opponents and outmuscle them once contact is instigated.

It's also notable how he'll assertively press markers when they drop deep with their back to the goal, for he likes to get touchtight so they can't turn, control cleanly, or enjoy any time to make a coherent decision.

Having come on leaps and bounds in terms of his positioning and tactical understanding in recent years, this should positively see him adapt reasonably smoothly from playing in a more defensive back five at Genoa to Postecoglou's offensively-geared back four that features an extremely high line.

Radu Dragusin's positional map

Then, when it comes to his work in possession, the Romanian ace shines here too even though he knows there's room for refinement in this compartment.

To start with his dribbling, and his blend of nifty control, powerful strides, ability to robustly hold off foes and knowledge of when the conditions are ideal for him to maraud upfield ensures this is a good weapon in his arsenal.

Relishing driving forward to gain territory for his team, luring out opponents and outfoxing them with slick maneuvers and alterations in pace and direction, this aspect of his game should transfer overly nicely to Ange's Spurs.

Dragusin's Heat Map from this season

Very competent with his distribution to help beat pressing units to progress the ball upfield, his aptitude here was especially on show last season in Serie B, where he was one of the best defenders in the build-up.

Composed, usually making sound judgment calls when to recycle possession or opt for the ambitious option, he'll be encouraged to take even greater strides with his passing within Postecoglou's ultra-offensive setup.

Be it switching the play exceptionally, striking measured through balls in behind, breaking the lines with precise passes to feet, or recirculating the ball patiently while waiting for a weakness in the opposition block to emerge, Dragusin should be okay dealing with his ball progression responsibilities.

Dragusin's ball progression metrics from Wyscout Player Report

Eager to learn and wanting to adapt as quickly as possible, expect him to settle in just fine, as he'll work tirelessly to assimilate into Postecoglou's plans, which will mean an initial adjustment of operating in a back four as opposed to the five at Genoa.

By the numbers in a range of Wyscout data points offensively and defensively, it’s interesting how well he stacks up against Spurs star Romero in many metrics, with his stopping numbers particularly catching the eye (as his attacking statistics are a bit skewed due to the stylistic differences between Genoa and Spurs).

Dragusin vs. Romero - defensive comparison
Dragusin vs. Romero - attacking comparison
Dragusin vs. Romero - attacking comparison
Dragusin vs. Romero - passing comparison
Image 12 - Dragusin vs. Romero key passing comparison

Intimidating, uncompromising, intelligent, full of quality in all phases and with still so much scope for improvement, all the ingredients are there that he'll develop into a world-class player in the future.

Durable and rarely suffering injuries in recent times, plus versatile and able to fill roles all across the backline, this will also be a huge asset to his new manager, who has regularly been forced into deploying full-backs in central defense.

Ready to impact from the off and desperate to succeed in this huge step up in class, it'll be fascinating watching how the man who idolizes Virgil van Dijk will fare, as he'll attack the challenge with great gusto while looking to continue his remarkable rise.

In the case of Dragusin, he's a fine example of how emphatically hard work, dedication, patience and persistence can pay off and allow any player to turn their dreams into reality.

If you want to learn more about Wyscout Data & API, get in touch!
Start your 15-day Wyscout free trial now.
Follow Edward on Twitter.