Tottenham Hotspur continue to be embroiled in perhaps the most contentious summer transfer saga of 2013, as superstar Gareth Bale remains a top target of Real Madrid, and perhaps Manchester United. The Welsh winger has been silent to the press about a possible departure from White Hart Lane, but many have speculated that he is open to a move to the Spanish titans.
“This is not the moment to talk,” Bale said, when approached by reporters who followed him to his car, according to Spanish publication Marca. “I cannot say anything now.”
Conflicting reports have new Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti looking to relaunch talks to land Bale, while others have said that talks between Madrid and Tottenham have “cooled.” Spurs chairman Daniel Levy may be asking for as much as £100 million and Manchester United seem to be the only other club who are prepared to pay anything like that amount for the 24-year-old, although such a deal would likely be contingent on Wayne Rooney’s possible move to Chelsea.
Bale, meanwhile, remains sidelined with a foot injury. He has been ruled out of Wales’s friendly with Ireland.
Regardless of the final outcome for Bale this summer, Tottenham appear to be looking to upgrade their attack. According to The Sun, Spurs have joined Liverpool in the race for Brazilian attacking midfielder Willian. The 25-year-old was linked to Spurs and Chelsea last summer but instead joined Russian club Anzhi Makhachkala from Shakhtar Donetsk in January for £32 million. Yet, with the club now looking to dramatically cut costs, Willian looks likely to move on. Given their need to reduce their budget, it appears unlikely that Anzhi will get anything close to the £35 million The Sun cites as their valuation for the player.
Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas may have his sights set on another South American. Argentinian forward Erik Lamela was recently linked to a move from Roma to White Hart Lane for a fee of £30 million, by The Times. In June, The Telegraph also reported that Spurs were interested in the 21-year-old. He scored 15 goals for Roma in Serie A last season. Lamela also has two appearances for Argentina.
In a less expensive potential deal, The Sun reported that Tottenham have renewed interest in Blackpool’s Tom Ince. The 21-year-old is valued at about £8 million and has been linked in recent months to Cardiff, Swansea, Liverpool, and even Inter Milan. The winger notched 18 goals for Blackpool in the Championship last season, and has been a regular for the England Under-21 side.
Villas-Boas could add creativity to his midfield with a move for Ajax’s Christian Eriksen. With just a year remaining on his contract, the Denmark international can move on this summer for the right price. And having been long linked with Liverpool, the 21-year-old has now said that he would relish a move to Tottenham.
“Tottenham are a great club," the Ajax midfielder told Danish newspaper BT. "I know from Vertonghen that it is a good club which is interesting. But there has not been any contact. I do not know if I am going to leave Ajax. We'll find out in two weeks. There are to my knowledge no negotiations right now either with a new club or Ajax. If there is a good approach (from another club), I see as an opportunity to try something new, but if nothing comes, I do not mind staying."
It’s unclear if Tottenham really are in need of more attacking options with the Premier League season starting this weekend. Spurs have already added Spanish forward Roberto Soldado from Valenica and Belgian winger Nacer Chadli from Twente, while Brazil midfielder Paulinho has also arrived at a combined cost of £50 million. Meanwhile, attacking midfielder Clint Dempsey and center-back Steven Caulker have moved on for a combined £14 million.