Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Tottenham muscle into battle with Man Utd, Liverpool for imposing defender starring for unbeaten side

Jean-Clair Todibo next to the Tottenham, Man Utd and Liverpool badges

Tottenham, Man Utd and Liverpool target Jean-Clair Todibo

Tottenham Hotspur have been named as the latest suitors in the race to bring Nice defender Jean-Clair Todibo to the Premier League.

Manchester United have been heavily linked with Todibo in recent weeks and the prospect of Nice owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe investing into the club has been seen as an advantageous factor, but reports have been insisting they are not the only potential destination for the former Barcelona man.

Now, the Evening Standard has revealed that Tottenham have joined the race to sign Todibo as they aim to reinforce the defensive depth available to Ange Postecoglou for the second half of the season.

An injury to summer signing Micky van de Ven has highlighted a need for Tottenham to find more cover for their backline. In their most recent match, against Aston Villa on Sunday, Postecoglou put full-backs Emerson Royal and Ben Davies in the middle of his backline.

Todibo would be a far more natural fit there, which is why Tottenham are gearing themselves up to compete for his signature in 2024.

The report claims they will be up against Manchester United and Liverpool in the battle to sign Todibo, but convincing the player himself to leave Nice might be the biggest challenge at this stage.

Nice are currently second in Ligue 1, one point behind defending champions Paris Saint-Germain, after enjoying an unbeaten start to the season.

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There would be a mutual interest between Todibo and his current employers to continue together while embroiled in what could well become a title challenge.

Furthermore, Todibo is keen to ensure he would be a regular starter at his next club, especially while he is eyeing a place in the France squad for Euro 2024.

If Tottenham cannot guarantee that, since Van de Ven will return to fitness in the new year and Cristian Romero is usually available too, then Todibo might put a move there on hold.

Todibo to cost close to £40m

Nice have the 23-year-old under contract until 2027 and will be aiming to get the best deal possible when they sell him, especially because they will owe a percentage of the fee to Barcelona.

TEAMtalk revealed recently that Nice will be seeking a fee somewhere between £43.5m and £50m, which would make him the most expensive defender to ever leave Ligue 1.

The Standard has suggested a similar but slightly lower valuation closer to the £39m mark, but it could be meaningless if Todibo decides to stay on the French Riviera anyway.

He has been with Nice since the summer of 2021 and has amassed 114 appearances in their colours so far.

His other previous clubs include Toulouse, Schalke and Benfica, but he has never played in the Premier League before.

Tottenham do have other names on their shortlist, including some with Premier League experience – namely Lloyd Kelly from Bournemouth, Marc Guehi from Crystal Palace and Jarrad Branthwaite from Everton – but Todibo might be one of the most highly rated options they think they can compete for.

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