According to a recent report from The Daily Mirror, Tottenham have been made a ‘take it or leave it’ bid for defender Toby Alderweireld. The 29-year-old’s future at the North London club has been subject of speculation throughout the summer given his contract situation, what with the centre back having just 12 months left on his current deal, and while there is an option of a one-year extension, it would bring a £25 million release clause into play.
And with Manchester United having reportedly made a final offer believed to be no more than £40 million for the Belgium international, Mauricio Pochettino’s side face a dilemma that will no doubt impact upon their chances of challenging for the Premier League title this season.
It has so far been a remarkably quiet window at Tottenham given no new players have been brought in by the club, while there have been no notable departures either despite speculation surrounding several first team players.
And while Pochettino’s men finished 23 points adrift of champions Manchester City last term, there is a feeling among many that Spurs have arguably the best starting eleven of any team in the division, while they have been able to add greater depth to their squad in recent times to suggest that they could well sustain a title challenge.
However, there is little doubting that, despite only featuring 14 times in the Premier League, Alderweireld is one of the most influential players in the Tottenham squad, and as such would be a massive blow to their chances of competing at the summit were they to let him go.
The 29-year-old has proven his qualities ever since moving to Spurs back in 2015 to become one of the best centre backs in the Premier League, helping Pochettino’s side to the best defensive record in the league back in both the 2015/16 season, and indeed the one after.
Yes, Davinson Sanchez came in and deputised outstandingly last season to keep the Belgian out of the team, but any side would suffer from losing a player of the calibre of Alderweireld – there aren’t many centre backs in Europe better than the 29-year-old.
Thus, chairman Daniel Levy and the Spurs hierarchy face a huge dilemma in the last knockings of the window.
Take the £40 million for Alderweireld, which itself is a huge sum for a player who will turn 30 next year and has just 12 months left on his contract, and Pochettino would be losing a mainstay of the success he has built at the club in recent seasons – that would no doubt put a serious dent in their title hopes.
Leave it and retain the 29-year-old beyond Thursday’s deadline, and he could reportedly be available for as £25 million in January and potentially nothing this time next year – yet they would keep one of the best defenders in the division.
Clearly, it’s a tricky one for the Tottenham hierarchy, as whatever decision they make has both pros and cons attached.
But in purely footballing terms, the decision they make will have a massive say on whether or not Pochettino’s men can indeed challenge for the Premier League title this season.
Tottenham fans… what do you think? Let us know!