Spurs beat Barca to Ajax defender - reports

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Tottenham are reportedly on the brink of landing defender Jan Vertonghen after agreeing a €12 million fee with Ajax, according to reports from Holland.

Spurs have been sounding out potential defensive transfer targets ahead of the January transfer window following an injury crisis at the back that saw William Gallas, Michael Dawson, Younes Kaboul and Ledley King all of the sidelined earlier this season, and despite persistent rumours Bolton’s Gary Cahill could be heading to White Hart Lane, Spurs boss Harry Redknapp appears to have opted for the Belgian international instead, according to Dutch paper Het Algemeen Dagblad.

Vertonghen has excelled since joining Ajax in 2006, helping the Dutch side to the Eredivisie title last season and impressing in the Champions League this term having been handed the captains armband earlier this year.

Vertonghen had been linked with a move away from Ajax over the summer, with Liverpool, Arsenal, Barcelona and Inter Milan all reportedly interested in securing his services ahead of the new season.

Catalan daily Sport reported last week that Barca boss Pep Guardiola has earmarked Vertonghen ahead of a potential approach over the festive period, however the reigning European Champions interest appears to have cooled, allowing Spurs to get ahead in the race for the Belgian international’s signature.

The arrival of Vertonghen at White Hart Line would represent a serious coup for Redknapp, who has been keen to add to his defensive line for some time having let Jonathan Woodgate leave the club over the summer added to his on-going concerns over the fitness of King, but ran out of time in his pursuit of Cahill before the summer transfer window slammed shut.

Redknapp may have been warded off by Cahill’s recent form, with the England international forming part of a Bolton defence that has conceded 31 goals in 13 games so far this season, the worst record in the Premier League.

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