Tottenham target dominant defender proven in Premier League in last-ditch effort to keep Conte happy

Antonio Rudiger, Niklas Sule, Niclas Fullkrug and Leon Goretzka

Tottenham Hotspur are starting to show an interest in a highly-rated defender who left the Premier League last summer in order to show Antonio Conte their ambition ahead of the next transfer window, according to reports.

Conte is currently facing an uncertain future as Tottenham head coach, since his contract is due to expire at the end of the season. Right now, it is unclear how willing he is to stay on. There are supposedly some doubts about how much Spurs are willing to back him in the transfer market.

For example, they signed several players last summer, but not all were with the approval of Conte. If he is going to extend his commitment to the club, he will want reassurances that his squad can be strengthened with options he likes.

With that in mind, Tottenham are now being linked with a move for Real Madrid defender Antonio Rudiger, according to reports from Spain.

Rudiger left Chelsea last summer at the end of his contract, after proving himself as a dominant defender in the Premier League – certainly in his latter years there.

After joining Real Madrid, though, Rudiger has not been able to demonstrate the same consistency. He has started 13 of his 18 La Liga appearances so far, amid a wider tally of 30 outings in all competitions.

But the reigning La Liga champions are being tipped to swoop for impressive RB Leipzig centre-back Josko Gvardiol. In turn, Rudiger might see his role reduce next season.

And since he is still only 29 years old, a player of his pedigree should be playing more regularly. Therefore, there could be an opportunity for Tottenham to offer him something new.

Rudiger would be Tottenham upgrade

Spurs are in need of high-calibre defensive reinforcements. Currently, their only impressive option is Cristian Romero. Others, like Davinson Sanchez, Clement Lenglet and Japhet Tanganga, are under pressure for their futures.

Rudiger would be an upgrade, while he would also fit well in Conte’s tactical system. Indeed, during his spells with Chelsea (in the Thomas Tuchel era) and Roma before that, he experienced playing in a back three.

However, whether Tottenham will be able to prise him out of a contract in Madrid that is due to last until 2026 is another matter. Besides, they might not be able to do so in time to convince Conte to stay.

That said, a prime version of Rudiger is someone who could perform well for any kind of manager. Therefore, he would be a welcome reinforcement for Tottenham, especially in comparison to their current options.

For now, though, this is a situation that seems to be hypothetical. Tottenham fans will need to wait for sources closer to home to confirm or deny their interest.

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