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Giovani dos Santos has plenty of suitors and Villarreal is at the front of the line

Don't expect Mexico's No. 10 to stick in the Segunda. He'll be playing top flight football next season with someone.

Dean Mouhtaropoulos

Don't expect Giovani dos Santos to stick with Mallorca and play in the Segunda next season. His club needs money, and they should find plenty of teams willing to give them a significant fee to obtain the services of the Mexico No. 10. Villarreal appear to be in the lead for his services, but he has, or had as of June 25, 'six or seven' suitors, according to a story in AS citing a club vice-president.

Said Llorenzo Serra Ferrer:

"With Giovani we have six or seven teams interested, without exaggeration. Some have made offers but have so far failed to interest the player. Others are yet to put their offers in. We listen to the interest and value it. LA Galaxy, Rubin Kazan, CSKA Moscow and, in Spain, teams like Valencia, Atletico Madrid and Real Betis are interested."

Since then, the field appears to have narrowed while adding Villarreal, who Ferrer did not mention by name. AS reported five days later that Valencia was the club closest to signing him, with Villarreal looking to get into the bidding as well. That article cites a €10m bid for Gio and Tomas Pina, the latter of whom signed with the Yellow Submarine on Friday. Villarreal USA has some information on that transfer.

Reports suggest that Pina's transfer could be for up to €5 million, but everything depends on the Giovani dos Santos situation. If Mallorca wants to stiff Tottenham, then both players need to go to the same club. Pina's arrival should give us a leg up, but the islanders are pesky negotiators.

Gio has a sell-on clause, meaning Tottenham Hotspur will get a portion of any potential sale. If Villarreal can get a deal done with Gio, they'll likely pay a large fee for Pina and a small fee for Gio. How that works, I have no idea. One would think that, since Pina has already signed, his fee is set. I'm not sure how "signing Giovani dos Santos" can be written into a contract as an incentive/fee escalator, but I'm sure they figured out a legal way to pull this off.

In any event, expect to see Gio playing in a better league than the Segunda next season. That league will probably be La Liga, but it might be the Russian Premier League or Major League Soccer. In any event, Gio will get a chance to play regularly at a higher level than the Segunda, and that's good for El Tri.