Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas is on the hunt for a new left-back and has identified Everton star Leighton Baines, who is stalling over signing a new contract, as a January transfer target despite Manchester United’s firm interest.
Man Utd may struggle to match Everton’s price tag
Baines is hot property and his former boss David Moyes has made it clear that United want to add the England international to their ranks in the next transfer window.
The Red Devils had a £12m offer turned down this summer by Everton with Moyes unwilling to match the £20m valuation set by Toffees chairman Bill Kenwright.
Tottenham aren’t afraid to splash the cash
Spurs, who have started the season like a team that could sustain a title challenge, won’t think twice about forking out £20m to get their man.
Villas-Boas was given the licence to significantly invest with funds attained through Gareth Bale’s £85m transfer to Real Madrid in the summer.
Roberto Soldado, Paulinho, Nacer Chadli, Etienne Capoue, Erik Lamela, Christian Eriksen and Vlad Chiriches all were drafted in at a cost of £100m but chairman Daniel Levy and owner Joe Lewis still have money set aside for yet more additions in January, especially if Spurs are involved in the title race.
Tottenham are short of options at left-back
After allowing Benoit Assou-Ekotto to join Harry Redknapp at Queens Park Rangers on loan, Danny Rose is the only natural left-sided defender at the disposal of Villas-Boas.
Despite starting four Premier League games this season, Rose hasn’t totally convinced the Spurs head honcho with his defensive ability and it’s an area where the north Londoners need to strengthen if they are to challenge on all fronts this season.
Spurs have also been linked with Inter Milan’s Alvaro Pereira and Real Madrid full-back Fabio Coentrao but the Spurs boss has made Baines his number one target after a fantastic start to the season under new Everton manager Roberto Martinez.