Inter are considering a move for Schalke centre-back Ozan Kabak if they find themselves needing to replace Tottenham target Milan Škriniar.
Spurs boss José Mourinho is on the lookout for a new centre-back and is understood to have Škriniar at the top of his wish list, with Benfica star Rúben Dias also under consideration at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
For now, the focus remains on Škriniar. According to Gianluca Di Marzio, talks over the Slovakia international are ‘advancing’, and Inter are now giving serious thought as to who they should pursue if Škriniar does leave.
One player in Inter’s sights is Kabak, who is seen as a smart long-term investment who could actually help out in the short term as well.
Inter will have to sell Škriniar before they can pursue Kabak, and FC Inter News suggest talks are about to heat up as Spurs are preparing their first official bid for the centre-back, which is expected to sit around the £45m mark.
That may not be enough to get the deal done as Inter are looking for closer to £55m. Alongside finding a new centre-back – Chris Smalling, Antonio Rüdiger and Nikola Milenković are named as three other targets – Antonio Conte wants to raise money to fund a move for Chelsea’s N’Golo Kanté.
La Gazzetta dello Sport back up those claims by stating that it’s ‘only a matter of time’ before Spurs’ first bid arrives, and chairman Daniel Levy hopes to negotiate himself a discount after Škriniar made it clear he has his heart set on a move to England.
Škriniar is keen to avoid spending a season on the fringes of Conte’s squad and would like to make the move to Spurs, but football.london add that it’s all a question of money.
Their report follows the same vibe as the others – Spurs aren’t ready to pay full price – but their figures are a little lower. Inter’s asking price is claimed to be £45m, but Spurs are sat at closer to £32m.
To try and reach a compromise, Spurs have offered players like defender Juan Foyth to Inter in exchange, but the Italian side are having none of it. Inter want straight cash as they dream of landing Kanté before the transfer window shuts.
There are obviously still a few unknowns when it comes to this deal, but it seems like everything is moving in the right direction for Spurs. If they can find a way to up their bid, this deal could start moving very quickly.
For more from Tom Gott, follow him on Twitter!