Tottenham are pushing to complete a move for Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez after indicating they are willing to meet the club’s €71 million valuation, sources have told ESPN.
Spurs and Arsenal are among the clubs tracking Martinez in hope of securing a deal with Inter, who are under pressure to offload players as a result of financial losses arising from the coronavirus pandemic.
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It is understood Spurs believe they have agreed a fee in principle but sources close to Inter have dismissed suggestions they are ready to sanction a transfer.
The situation has been complicated by Chelsea’s pursuit of Romelu Lukaku. Inter have already seen Achraf Hakimi join Paris Saint-Germain and also agreed a fee of €115m with Chelsea for Lukaku.
The departure of Lukaku will spark fury among Inter fans and the club have a difficult decision whether to exacerbate tensions further by allowing Lukaku’s strike partner to leave.
It is unclear whether the departures of Hakimi and Lukaku will be enough to relieve the financial pressure from Inter’s Chinese owners Suning. They are also listening to offers for the club as a whole after Chinese President Xi Jinping urged the country’s investors to focus their efforts on domestic pursuits.
Spurs are privately insisting the club’s pursuit of a striker this summer is an effort to add support for Harry Kane and not replace him despite Manchester City‘s desire to sign the England captain.
Tottenham have so far shown no willingness to negotiate with City, who are refusing at this stage to offer the £150m it would take for chairman Daniel Levy to consider doing business. Sources have also suggested new head coach Nuno Espirito Santo wants his team to play with two forwards this season.