AZ Alkmaar have told Tottenham to improve their meet their asking price for Vincent Janssen – or risk missing out on the Dutch striker.
The north London club made an €18m offer for the forward last month, which AZ rejected out of hand.
AZ are thought to be holding out for a further €2m for the 22-year-old, who scored 27 goals in 32 Eredivisie appearances last season.
But the club’s sporting director Max Huiberts has now issued a warning to Mauricio Pochettino’s side over their valuation of the Dutch international.
“There is a lot of speculation and I read a lot of nonsense stories,” he told Dutch newspaper Noordhollands Dagblad.
“We received one bid from Tottenham Hotspur that we have not accepted. That’s not so strange to me. It is not often that a club agrees immediately with a first offer. Then we heard nothing more.
“No, that’s not us. If you want to buy something, you have to go to the store. The store does not belong to you.”
Janssen has since expressed his frustration at not being allowed to move, stating: “I have expressed my choice to the club. In my opinion, Spurs bid a high amount.
“At the moment I’m still a bit disappointed with AZ. I’m disappointed with how they behaved. I would like to make the move.”