Tottenham crisis deepens as Daniel Levy ‘prepares for tough talks’ to save deal
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Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy is preparing for crunch talks with Juventus chiefs amid fresh doubts over the likelihood of a permanent move for Dejan Kulusevski, according to reports. The Swedish winger has spent almost a season and a half on loan at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with the deal including a clause to make the move a permanent one ahead of the new campaign.
Tottenham reportedly have the option to buy Kulusevski for a transfer fee of around £30million, although it remains unclear if the criteria to bring him to north London permanently will be met between now and the end of the season. He has already appeared in the specified number of matches to qualify him for the move, but the club’s failure to qualify for the Champions League has put the deal in serious doubt, according to Gazzetta dello Sport.
Spurs currently find themselves in the midst of a crisis after seeing their season unravel following the departure of Antonio Conte and have been on the receiving end of some heavy defeats over the last few weeks. They are now certain to miss out on Champions League football next season and are yet to make any tangible progress regarding their efforts to appoint a new manager, which is likely to be delaying their preparations for the upcoming campaign.
It is said that Levy is now gearing up for discussions with Juventus’ hierarchy in an attempt to find a compromise, with the Italian giants eager to sell Kulusevski when the season draws to a close. Those in power at the Allianz Stadium are reportedly concerned that several loan players could be making unwelcome returns in the summer after they were initially expected to leave the club on permanent deals.
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Conte and Fabio Paratici were both huge fans of Kulusevski, who they had previously worked with during their time together at Juventus, but their recent departures from Tottenham have seemingly plunged the 23-year-old’s future into uncertainty. It also remains to be seen whether the club’s eventual new manager will be looking to use Kulusevski, with their search for a permanent boss still very much ongoing behind closed doors.
Kulusevski has made a total of 28 appearances in the Premier League for Spurs over the course of this season, chipping in with two goals and six assists in the process. He earned plenty of plaudits for his impressive form towards the back end of the previous campaign but has struggled to replicate the same level of performance this time around, with Tottenham having endured a hugely difficult time of things this season both domestically and in Europe.
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Former Spurs goalkeeper Paul Robinson recently claimed that Kulusevski has been one of the club’s few shining lights in spite of his poor return over the course of this season, with Rodrigo Bentancur also impressing in midfield at times over the last few months.
“I think they have been a poor watch this season,” Robinson told Sky Sports News earlier this year. “I haven’t enjoyed watching Tottenham, at times. Defensively, they have been vulnerable and they will say we haven’t got the players and we haven’t been able to evolve the squad like we have been able to do and bring the players in.
“Certain players have worked, Kulusevski and Bentancur have been two great signings, but I don’t think Tottenham are at the level where they should be.”
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