Tottenham refusing to give up on £40m centre-back target


Tottenham are reportedly continuing to monitor Inter Milan defender Milan Skriniar ahead of a potential January transfer window offer.

Spurs had hoped to land the 25-year-old over the summer following extensive talks with Inter.

However, the two clubs could not agree a free, with Spurs unwilling to pay the £40million asking price.

The north London side ended up landing highly-rated youngster Joe Rodon instead. The former Swansea impressed in his first Spurs start in the weekend draw at Chelsea.

But according to Football Insider, the addition of Rodon did not put a halt to their chase for Skriniar.

A Spurs source reportedly told them that the Slovakia international was always Jose Mourinho’s top defensive target.

And despite Inter being unwilling to do business earlier in the year, things could change come the new year. The Covid-19 pandemic could force the Italian outfit to drop their price, and if that was the case then Spurs would likely do business.

Tottenham may also be forced into the market if Toby Alderweireld is out for longer than expected. The Belgian should be back for the festive fixtures after a muscle injury.

Mourinho is also said to be concerned about the form of Davinson Sanchez. The club’s former record signing has not featured in the league since the disastrous 3-3 draw against West Ham.

Milan Skriniar Inter Milan

As for Skriniar, the imposing defender has only started four of Inter’s nine Serie A games. However, he did miss three of those with Covid-19.

The left-sided centre-back joined Inter back in 2017 and has made 134 appearances in all competitions.

At this stage it remains to be seen if Spurs will be ready to spend big again in January. Indeed, they have also been linked with cheaper defensive options, including Sassuolo’s Gian Marco Ferrari.

The 28-year-old Italy international is rated at around £15m and was previously a target for Everton.

Mourinho playing it cagey with media

Joe Cole believes Chelsea manager Frank Lampard and Spurs boss Jose Mourinho will be telling their players they can win the Premier League title this season.

Lampard and Mourinho played down their side’s hopes of landing the title after the two sides played out a tense 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. Mourinho was especially dismissive of Tottenham’s hopes despite their return to the top of the table.

Yet speaking at a BT Sport event, former Chelsea midfielder Cole believes the comments offered up for public consumption by the two managers will strike a very different tone to what is being muttered in their dressing rooms.

“I’m sure what the managers say to their players behind closed doors is different to what they say to the media,” stated Cole. “Chelsea and Tottenham will be thinking this could be our year, but you have to stay focused as the Premier League can catch you out. Anyone can beat anyone in this league.” Read more…