Tottenham are gearing up for a fresh round of talks in their quest to sign a wing-back perfectly suited to Antonio Conte’s system, though Fabrizio Romano has hinted another risky bid will be made.
Spurs put their season back on track on Monday night when grinding out a narrow 1-0 victory over Fulham. The win cut the gap to fourth-placed Man Utd to just three points. Tottenham also remain in the FA Cup and have a winnable tie against AC Milan looming in the Champions League Round of 16.
Antonio Conte is seeking at least two new signings in the January window’s final week. A twin arrival would simultaneously aid Spurs’ efforts in the remainder of the season, as well as enhance the chances of Conte commiting his long-term future to the club.
His current deal expires at season’s end and Tottenham have reservations about signing players suited to a Conte system if he winds up moving on at season’s end.
A move for long-time Spurs target Nicolo Zaniolo has reportedly been agreed, per 90min. The finer details must now be ironed out, with the fee and terms of an obligation to buy following a six-month loan still to be settled.
Elsewhere, another target in Conte’s sights is Sporting Lisbon’s Pedro Porro.
The right wing-back would be an ideal addition given his defensive solidity and attacking prowess from the position.
The 23-year-old has been named in two successive Primeira Liga teams of the season and his Sporting deal contains a release clause worth €45m (approx. £40m).
Tottenham have tabled a bid already, though it fell well below the release clause and contained an unnamed makeweight.
The Times later claimed Emerson Royal, Japhet Tanganga and Bryan Gil were all offered to Sporting. Tottenham’s idea is to include one of the trio as well as a fixed fee below the £40m clause to help sweeten the deal.
Risky Tottenham strategy to continue?
For their part, Sporting have repeatedly insisted they’ll only sell their star wing-back if the release clause is activated.
Now, transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has reported a fresh round of talks will take place today (Tuesday).
Romano tweeted the two clubs will be in dialogue once more, and shed further light on Spurs’ bid.
The fee they previously offered was €37m (approx. £32.5m), and the journalist confirmed they attempted to include a first-teamer as a makeweight.
Given Romano claimed the two clubs will hold new talks today, it stands to reason Spurs will continue with their risky strategy of offering a package other than simply hitting the clause.
Indeed, if they intended to activate the clause, there’d be no need to discuss the move with Sporting.
With less than a week remaining in the window, the clock is as big of an enemy as finances right now. Spurs are seemingly pinning their hopes on Sporting lowering their demands late on through fear of missing out on what would still be a sizeable fee for the club.