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Tottenham Hotspur eye Toby Alderweireld replacement with Lazio defender

Tottenham Hotspur eye Toby Alderweireld replacement with Lazio defender

London, April 18: Tottenham Hotspur have turned their attention to Lazio’s Luiz Felipe as they scout the market for a new centre-half due to concerns over the long-term future of Toby Alderweireld, according to reports.

Alderweireld has been sought after for two seasons by the Manchester United and the Premier League giants came pretty close to sign him this year. However, the Red Devils couldn’t convince Tottenham to sell the defender.

The 30-year-old's contract was set to expire this summer and United even said had offered them a close to £50million. But instead of letting him go, Mauricio Pochettino's side activated a one-year option to keep him until 2020 – but in doing so, enabled a £26million release clause which can be triggered this summer.

Although no approach has been made for Alderweireld so far but with a new long-term contract seemingly unlikely, Spurs appear to be preparing for life without their dominant Belgian international.

To fill up the gap, the London based sides reportedly have lined-up a couple of names, and Lazio's Felipe is understood to be the latest name linked to the list.

The 22-year-old was signed by Lazio in 2016 and following a loan spell at Salernitana. He has been a utility player at the Stadio Olimpico over the last two seasons. He is yet to cement a first team spot permanently in the side, however, has caught the eye whenever has been called upon.

Spurs have sent scouts to watch the Brazilian defender in action on more than one occasion this season. Felipe has played 19 times for Lazio this season with 13 games in the top-flight, scoring once.

Felipe could provide the depth to allow Spurs to retain the defensive stability while first-choice defenders Sanchez, Vertoghnen are sure to retain their place.

Spurs also like Sampdoria’s Joachim Andersen and Everton’s Michael Keane, but both players would cost in the region of €50m while the 22-year-old is seen as a cheaper alternative who is likely to command as little as €20m.

After zero spendings this season, Spurs looks to have a busy window in the coming season. Pochettino's side has been linked with at least three new major signings and Fulham's Ryan Sessegnon, Jack Grealish of Aston Villa and Bournemouth's David Brooks have been tipped as potential new arrivals.

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Story first published: Thursday, April 18, 2019, 15:39 [IST]
Other articles published on Apr 18, 2019

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