Tottenham Hotspur have told Internazionale that Jan Vertonghen is not for sale in the January transfer window amid interest from the Italian club, according to The Guardian.
However, it seems Inter will be in a straight battle with the north London side for the 118-cap Belgium international’s affection after it emerged the Lilywhites remained keen on extending the Belgian’s current deal.
The warning from Spurs hasn’t put off Antonio Conte’s side, who are said to be preparing a three-year contract offer to poach the 32-year-old next summer with Tottenham unlikely to match the offer.
It’s a big conundrum for Mauricio Pochettino, who has already seen his side concede 24 goals this season, already 37% of last season’s total despite more than half of the campaign left to play. Vertonghen has featured in nine of the 14 games with the Lilywhites conceding 18 of the 24 goals (via Transfermarkt).
Digging deeper into his statistics for this year begins to paint a picture of how far he has fallen from the days he was lauded as being part of one of the best defensive partnerships in the Premier League (via The Sun).
Pochettino also has younger centre-back prospects on his hands in the shape of Davinson Sanchez and Juan Foyth, who despite their struggles, stand at just 23 and 21 years old and have time to vastly improve.
All the signs point in one direction for the defender when assessing whether he should remain at the club. Vertonghen has little to offer and needs to make way for younger options in defence if Spurs are serious about challenging for honours.
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