Tottenham’s efforts to sign Radu Dragusin may have hit a late obstacle amid reports Napoli have joined the race to sign the highly-rated Genoa defender.
Spurs have been in desperate need of defensive reinforcements for large parts of the season, with first-choice pairing Micky van der Ven and Cristian Romero missing swathes of the campaign through injury and suspension.
Van der Ven is said to be nearing a return to first-team action, while Romero still faces several weeks out with his latest injury.
The north London club were closing in on their first deal of the January transfer window for Dragusin but now face last-minute competition from Napoli
According to ESPN, the defending Serie A champions are looking to bolster their defensive options and have stepped up their interest in the 21-year-old in recent days.
Dragusin was said to be happy to make the move to north London for a fee in and around £25m but interest from Napoli will likely complicate the deal.
The Romanian international has played every minute of Genoa’s league campaign so far, scoring on two occasions.
Should Dragusin make the move to Ange Postecoglou’s side, it could spell the end of Eric Dier’s Tottenham career.
The 29-year-old has been a bit-part player throughout this campaign – despite the injuries to Van der Ven and Romero – and has received interest from Bayern Munich.
A move for Dier is only likely to be sanctioned once Tottenham have brought in a centre-back.
Tottenham will look to kick-off in the new year in winning style as they take on Burnley in the third round of the FA Cup on Friday.
Spurs, though, will have to do without captain Son Heung-Min, who scored a hat-trick in a 5-2 league win when the sides met earlier in the season, after the forward left to join up with his South Korean teammates ahead of the Asian Cup.