Spurs earmark Renato Sanches as midfield option after Houssem Aouar transfer hopes fade

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Tottenham could turn their attention to Renato Sanches after losing hope of beating Arsenal to the signing of Houssem Aouar, according to reports. Spurs are in the market for a creative central midfielder this summer and are interested in Lille’s Sanches.

After hiring Nuno Espirito Santo as manager and Fabio Paratici as director of football, Spurs are now finally able to focus on the transfer window.

Keeping hold of Harry Kane remains a top priority but the club’s hierarchy are also working on incoming moves this summer.

Back-up in the full-back positions and centre-back are on the cards, as well as a forward-thinking central midfielder.

One of the players Spurs have been linked with is Aouar, who has been a long-term target for rivals Arsenal.

Aouar contributed eight goals and three assists in 33 appearances for Lyon last season and has reportedly caught the eye of Arsenal, Spurs, Atletico Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain.

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According to The Sun, The Gunners are now the clear frontrunners for the 23-year-old’s signature.

Arsenal are looking to bolster their midfield, with Granit Xhaka potentially joining Roma and Matteo Guendouzi moving to Marseille on loan, while Dani Ceballos and Martin Odegaard have rejoined Real Madrid following loan spells.

Mikel Arteta’s side have therefore pushed hard for Aouar, who is under contract with Lyon until June 2023.

Arsenal’s reported progress has seen Tottenham move onto other targets, with Lille’s Sanches now in their sights.

Barcelona are ‘very interested’ and have already been in contact with the Portuguese midfielder’s representatives, according to lesport10.

But Sanches’ strong performances for Portugal at Euro 2020 has sparked interest from plenty of other sides, too.

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Tottenham are one of them and although they are yet to make a ‘concrete offer’ they do have ‘strong feelings’ about the 23-year-old.

Spurs could have an advantage over Sanches, because his agent, Jorge Mendes, is also the representative of their manager, Nuno.

Arsenal are also mentioned, but according to the report, the Gunners are more interested in Aouar and Rennes wonderkid Eduardo Camavinga.

Sanches made 33 appearances across all competitions for Lille last season, contributing two goals and three assists from central midfield.

He helped Lille shock PSG by winning the Ligue 1 title and has rekindled his career following some barren years with Bayern Munich and on loan with Swansea.

Spurs could face competition from Liverpool over Sanches, with SportItalia reporting that the Reds are in pole position in the transfer race.

Liverpool are looking for a replacement for Gini Wijnaldum, who has joined PSG on a free transfer, and have been linked with several midfielders in this transfer window.

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