Tottenham 'ramp up interest in Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic'

Tottenham ‘ramp up interest in Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic after West Ham pulled out of talks for the £14m-rated star’… and director of football Fabio Paratici ‘wanted to sign the Serbian for Juventus’

  • Tottenham are ready to step up their bid to sign Nikola Milenkovic, reports claim 
  • West Ham were holding talks with Fiorentina but are said to have pulled out 
  • The Serbian – rated at £14m – was a target for Fabio Paratici two years ago
  • Spurs’ new director tried to sign the defender when he was at Juventus 

Tottenham are set to make their move for Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic after West Ham United stepped down from talks, according to reports.

Sportsmail reported earlier this month that David Moyes’ side were locked in negotiations with the Serie A outfit over their Serbian centre-back, but the Hammers had faced competition from Juventus – who were also in the market for a defender after letting Merih Demiral join Atalanta.

But the Times claim that the West London outfit have now withdrawn from the running for Milenkovic – with Tottenham now eyeing him up.

Spurs are stepping up their interest in Fiorentina defender Nikola Milenkovic, reports claim

Milenkovic had been one of many targets for West Ham, who are also looking at Rennes’s Nayef Aguerd, Liverpool’s Nat Phillips and Marseille’s Duje Caleta-Car. 

The 23-year-old – rated at £14m – is entering the final year of his contract in Florence and Tottenham’s new director of football Fabio Paratici has been tracking his progress for two years and had tried to sign him for Juventus, the report adds.

The towering 6 ft 5 defender has been with Fiorentina since 2017 having joined from hometown club Partizan for just £4m. He has played 127 times since, scoring 11 goals and quickly becoming one of the most highly-rated defenders in Serie A.

Tottenham are intent on making another acquisition at centre-back despite bolstering the squad with the arrival of Cristian Romero from Atalanta, with boss Nuno Espirito Santo keen to tighten up his defence. 

The towering Serbian has turned heads during his four years playing with Fiorentina

Tottenham’s new director of football Fabio Paratici (centre) tried to sign the defender when he was working at Juventus two years ago

The club have been linked with Bologna’s Takehiro Tomiyasu, but the Times claim that a move for Chelsea’s Kurt Zouma – who is keen to stay in London is looking increasingly unlikely.  

Tottenham looked particularly weak in defence under Jose Mourinho last season, but Nuno’s side secured a clean sheet in their impressive 1-0 win against Man City on Sunday.

In what was Espirito Santo’s first game in charge, his side looked organised at the back as he left new signing Romero on the bench and opted to start Eric Dier alongside Davinson Sanchez.

The club have already signed centre-back Cristian Romero but are targeting another defender

The club are still facing uncertainty over the future of Harry Kane – a transfer saga that could drag on until the end of the window on August 31.

His situation took another twist on Tuesday as Sportsmail reported that the striker believes Daniel Levy has broken promises made to him about leaving the club this summer. 

Kane’s camp were led to believe the club would accept a bid for the player if Spurs failed to secure a top four finish or win a trophy last season.

The 28-year-old England captain will continue to give his all for his boyhood club if called upon and is keen to regain the trust of supporters after confusion around his return to pre-season – with reports initially suggesting he refused to train.

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