Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Tottenham in danger of pulling plug completely on centre-back deal after asking price more than tripled

Blackburn Rovers stars Ashley Phillips and Sam Gallagher

Tottenham are reportedly in danger of pulling out of a deal to sign a highly-rated centre-back after the player’s asking price was more then tripled.

While so much focus has been on Spurs moving for another striker, in the wake of increasing continued doubts over Harry Kane’s future, Ange Postecoglou has made strengthening the centre of his defence the top focus before the window shuts.

At least two new players are wanted in that regard, and although Wolfsburg’s Mick van de Ven and Leverkusen star Edmond Tapsoba remain priority targets, it’s believed that a swoop for Blackburn youngster Ashley Phillips is close to being finalised.

The 18-year-old is said to have already had his medical in north London ahead of a potential £3million switch, but multiple reports suggest the deal is now in massive jeopardy after Rovers decided to up their asking price significantly late in the process.

The Sun reports that the Championship side now want a package worth nearly £10m for Phillips, with £5m up front and then the rest made up in a number of bonuses over coming seasons.

That is more than triple the amount that Tottenham are ready to pay for a player who is regarded as ‘phenomenal’ by Rovers, who want to make sure they are fuly compensated for his potential loss.

The fee for Phillips is still way off the £30m Wolfsburg want for Van de Ven and the £35m Leverkusen are asking for Tapsoba, although the latter two are ready-made staters in Postecoglou’s XI compared to the Blackburn youngster, who is considered one for the future.

Levy wants players out before new defensive recruits arrive

At this stage, Spurs’ chase for a centre-back looks to be becoming more and more desperate and there is a concern they may have to settle for a cut-price deal for Barcelona’s Clement Lenglet instead.

The Frenchman hardly looked commanding while on loan in north London last season, but with Barca keen to get him off their books a bargain proposal has been offered to Daniel Levy.

Postecoglou, however, wants quick centre-backs who are capable of playing in a high line to suit his pressing game and Lenglet is not exactly blessed with great pace.

That is exactly why Van de Ven and Tapsoba have emerged as top targets, although it may well be that Levy wants the likes of Davinson Sanchez, Japhet Tanganga and Joe Rodon gone before he commits to spending on new defensive recruits.

After having their last pre-season outing against Leicester washed out, Tottenham are back in action on Wednesday when they face Lion City Sailors in Singapore.

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