Tottenham switch focus to another centre-back target after being blown out of the water in Skriniar chase

Inter Milan defenders Denzel Dumfries and Milan Skriniar

Tottenham have reportedly been blown out of the water in their summer pursuit of a top Antonio Conte centre-back target, who is now seemingly destined to head to France.

Milan Skriniar has been on Spurs’ radar ever since Fabio Paratici arrived as sporting director and those links only intensified after Antonio Conte came in as manager to replace Nuno Espirito Santo.

The Slovakia international played a key role under Conte as Inter won the Serie A title in 2020/21.

Tottenham have been firmly in play for the imposing defender, who opted against signing a fresh Inter contract in favour of a free transfer exit at the end of the current campaign.

However, it looks as if they have no chance of competing with PSG in the race to sign Skriniar.

Indeed, according to Football Insider, Skriniar is now putting the finishing touches on a pre-contract agreement with PSG.

The report adds that the Paris giants have agreed a lucrative deal with the 28-year-old which is far bigger than anything Tottenham are offering.

While Skriniar’s switch is still to be confirmed by PSG, he has been removed as Inter skipper over his decision to run down his contract.

And while PSG had hoped to bring in the player on a cheap deal in January, they failed to agree a deal with the Nerazzurri.

Football Insider adds, however, that Spurs could now switch their attention to Netherlands star Stefan de Vrij instead.

The 31-year-old will also be available on a free this summer and was linked with a move to north London in January.

New centre-backs on Tottenham agenda

Signing new centre-backs will very much be a priority for Conte, if he stays at Tottenham beyond this season.

The Italian has watched his side struggle defensively all campaign long, with the 4-1 mauling at Leicester on Saturday showing up all their issues, especially in the absence of the suspended Cristian Romero.

Tottenham are also highly unlikely to turn Clement Lenglet’s loan move into a permanent switch. The Frenchman is on £204,000-a-week at Barcelona and there is no chance of Daniel Levy agreeing to that deal.

Conte’s men are back in action on Tuesday night when they head to AC Milan in the Champions League.

The first leg of the last-16 tie will see Tottenham without the injured Hugo Lloris, Rodrigo Bentancur and Yves Bissouma, while Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg is banned.

The absence of his two first-choice midfielders is likely to leave Conte turning to Oliver Skipp and youngster Pape Matar Sarr at the San Siro.

READ MORE: Conte hit by major transfer budget loss as Tottenham flop fails to convince loan club on permanent move