Harry Kane remains a Tottenham player with the new Premier League season set to commence.

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola has declared their interest in signing the England international.

The situation has been at a standstill and remains unresolved.

 

TOP STORY - CITY READY TO UP KANE BID

Manchester City are willing to pay €150m (£127m) for Harry Kane as they try to convince Tottenham to sell their captain, claims The Guardian via Fabrizio Romano.

Spurs have reiterated Kane is not for sale this off-season despite the forward's reported request to leave late last season.

Tottenham turned down a €117m (£100m) bid previously, which is the same amount City spent to sign Jack Grealish from Aston Villa.

 

ROUND-UP

- AS have reported that Paris Saint-Germain will look to sign Cristiano Ronaldo in 2022 as a replacement given the anticipated exit of Kylian Mbappe, whose contract expires next year. Mbappe is a long-time target for Real Madrid.

- Tottenham have ramped up their bid to sign Fiorentina striker Dusan Vlahovic, amid interest from Atletico Madrid claims Sky Sport Italia. Spurs will offer €60m (£51m) including bonuses.

- Corriere dello Sport reports that Barcelona are shopping around Philippe Coutinho, who has been offered to Lazio, Milan and Inter.

- Tammy Abraham remains unconvinced about moving to Roma despite meeting with the Italian club who had agreed terms with Chelsea, reports Corriere dello Sport.

- The Sun claims Everton have joined Tottenham, Inter and Zenit in pursuing Napoli skipper Lorenzo Insigne.

The Premier League is back! 

Arsenal travel to newly promoted Brentford in the opening game of the 2021-22 campaign on Friday.

Champions Manchester City face Tottenham – and possibly top transfer target Harry Kane – on Sunday, with Liverpool in action against returning Norwich City on Saturday, after Manchester United have hosted Leeds United.

So, ahead of the new season, why not give this Opta-powered quiz a go? You can find the answers at the bottom of the page...

1. Arsenal begin against Brentford – it is the fourth time the Gunners have been involved in the opening game of a Premier League campaign, winning the other three in 2008-09, 2017-18 and 2020-21, but who did they play against in those matches? 

2. Over the last 10 Premier League matches of 2020-21, Leeds claimed 23 points, winning seven games and drawing twice. Can you name the only  club to collect more points across the same time span?

3. Liverpool are unbeaten in their five Premier League openers under Jurgen Klopp, but how many goals have the Reds scored across these matches?

4. Aston Villa begin life without Jack Grealish with a trip to Watford. Emiliano Buendia will wear the number 10 shirt, but how many goals did he assist for Norwich in the Championship last season?

5. Sunday's meeting between Spurs and City brings up Nuno Espirito Santo's first competitive game as Tottenham boss. Who was the club's last manager to lose his opening fixture in charge?

 

Answers:

1. West Brom, Leicester City, Fulham
2. Liverpool (26)
3. 19 
4. 16
5. Andre Villas-Boas 

Tottenham have confirmed their squad numbers for the upcoming campaign, with Manchester City target Harry Kane keeping the 10 shirt.

Kane has worn 10 for Spurs since the 2015-16 season, though the England captain seemingly wishes to leave the club.

He has three years remaining on his Tottenham contract, but Premier League champions City have made last season's Golden Boot winner their priority signing after they sealed the arrival of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa.

City splashed out a British record fee of £100million on Grealish, and reportedly had a bid of a similar amount for Kane turned down by Tottenham earlier in the transfer window.

Pep Guardiola has outlined his intention to sign Kane if possible, though City's manager acknowledged the ball will ultimately be in Tottenham's court.

On Thursday, reports emerged that Kane – who is set to return to training with Spurs on Friday – would be the subject of a second offer from City worth in the region of £150m.

However, despite the uncertainty over his future, Kane was named among the Spurs players to be given squad numbers for the season.

He keeps the number 10, while Bryan Gil, signed from Sevilla in a part-exchange deal with Erik Lamela, takes the 11 jersey that was vacated by the Argentinian.

On-loan goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini has been handed the number 22, while defender Cristian Romero, who also joined from Atalanta, has taken the number four that was previously occupied by Toby Alderweireld.

Nuno Espirito Santo's side kick off their Premier League campaign against City on Sunday. It remains to be seen as to whether Kane will feature.

The new Premier League season has not even begun yet and we're already enjoying some enthralling narratives.

Beyond the mundane matter of who might win the league, who will beat the drop and how thick the VAR lines will be, there are some tantalising stories we'll be following closely in the coming weeks.

Below, Stats Perform takes a look at some of the big talking points...

 

Blue Benitez

Predicting football is often a fool's game – especially in an era when Lionel Messi no longer plays for Barcelona – but Rafael Benitez at Everton? Who saw that coming?

The Spaniard is back in the Premier League, two years after walking away from Newcastle United, having been tempted by the same project that won over Carlo Ancelotti before the lure of a Real Madrid return became too great.

Benitez was a fans' favourite at Newcastle, arguably as much as he was at Liverpool, where he reached two Champions League finals including the unforgettable triumph in Istanbul. His connection to the red half of Merseyside meant his decision to head to Goodison Park raised the eyebrows of some and the blood pressure of others. In fact, only one man has ever managed both clubs: William Edward Barclay, Everton's first boss in 1888 and Liverpool's manager from 1892. We'll forgive you if you don't remember.

The scrutiny on Benitez, who has recorded 11 wins against Everton in his coaching career, will be severe. He has the credentials, but if he cannot quickly prove he is the man to realise the dreams of owner Farhad Moshiri and challenge the 'big six', the pressure could become pretty uncomfortable.

 

Virgil return lifts Reds

For a while, it seemed everything would be okay. In the first 11 games after Virgil van Dijk was injured against Everton last October, Liverpool conceded just six goals and kept as many clean sheets. Perhaps the loss of the Netherlands colossus would not be quite so damaging.

Of course, as injuries in defence piled up and confidence in their title chances waned, Liverpool's season ended up being one of major disappointment even though a strong final few weeks saw them snatch a Champions League spot.

Van Dijk's impact cannot really be disputed: since his move to Anfield in January 2018, Liverpool have won 75.8 per cent of matches with the centre-back in the side and only 54.3 per cent without him. They average 2.4 points per game with him (compared with 1.9 without), and even score more goals on average (2.3 compared with 1.8) when he's playing. No wonder fans began to count down the days to his return.

On Saturday, we can finally expect to watch Van Dijk in competitive action again, with Jurgen Klopp confirming he is fit to start the season. He could even begin his partnership with new signing Ibrahima Konate against Norwich City at Carrow Road. How Liverpool's campaign progresses over the opening few weeks, and how Van Dijk's return goes, might just tell us whether another title tilt is on the cards.

 

Rom-ember us?

Two of the biggest transfers in this pre-season have seen stars returning to England: Jadon Sancho, who finally got his Manchester United move for £72.9million a year after Borussia Dortmund had demanded a sizeably bigger sum; and Romelu Lukaku, who is heading to Chelsea for roughly £93m.

Sancho left Manchester City for the Bundesliga as a teenager and promptly became one of Europe's standout attacking players, with 50 goals and 57 assists in 137 appearances. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer wanted a player to get fans on their feet, and he's almost certainly found it: Sancho completed 48 multi take-ons (beating more than one player with a dribble) in the Bundesliga, at least 14 more than any other player in his time in Germany.

For Lukaku, it's a case of unfinished business at Chelsea, the club he left back in 2014. The standout performer for Inter last season, with 30 goals and 11 assists in all competitions, he propelled his side to their first Serie A title since 2010 before taking up the chance to return to Stamford Bridge, where a consistent goalscorer could be decisive to their Premier League title hopes.

Sancho and Lukaku initially struggled to convince managers to give them a shot as youngsters in the Premier League. They return as elite players determined to prove a point. Given the costs involved, the pressure will be on both to perform – and quickly.

 

Did Jack hammer Harry's City hopes?

Manchester City are not exactly frugal in the transfer market, but rarely will they willingly pay over the odds for an individual. That's what made their willingness to spend £100million on Jack Grealish, a player with 12 senior international caps and zero Champions League experience, a touch surprising.

This is not to suggest Grealish is not a good player, of course. This is a man who was involved in a remarkable 376 open-play attacking sequences over the past two seasons for Aston Villa, a team who finished 17th and 11th in those campaigns. It's just notable that Pep Guardiola felt it was warranted to smash City's transfer record by nearly £40m to sign yet another midfielder, especially given what's going on – or not going on – with Harry Kane.

Kane was expected to be City's marquee signing in this window but, as of now, his future is unclear. He is finally due to return to Tottenham training this week but whether he is involved against City in their opening game is harder to know. And if City were willing to spend nine figures on Grealish, you can expect Spurs chairman Daniel Levy to demand top dollar for last term's golden boot winner, who has three years left on his contract.

Will City stump up the cash? Will Kane try his best to force Spurs' hand? Will he be staying in north London for at least a few months more, his form undimmed, the goals flowing as normal? It will be fascinating to watch.

 

The new Premier League season is on the horizon and there are plenty of exciting new signings to keep an eye on.

Jack Grealish has moved within the league for a record £100million fee, while a familiar face in Romelu Lukaku is set to return to England's top flight.

Premier League fans can also look forward to watching plenty of new stars, though.

Stats Perform picks out four exciting additions...
 

Jadon Sancho

An England international who has never played in English football, Sancho will garner plenty of attention at Manchester United this season – and rightly so.

Since the start of the 2018-19 season, Sancho has the joint-most goal involvements among English players in Europe's top five leagues, his 78 matched by Three Lions captain Harry Kane.

Those involvements arrived once every 87 minutes on average and included 41 assists, trailing only Thomas Muller (48) and Lionel Messi (43) in that regard.

Sancho left Borussia Dortmund on a high with May's DFB-Pokal final triumph, but the 2019-20 campaign was arguably his best.

The winger had 17 goals and 16 assists in the league; over the past 10 seasons, only Eden Hazard, Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez have also tallied at least 15 goals and 15 assists in the same season.

And Sancho now joins a United side who last term already had six players with 10 or more goal involvements in all competitions (Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Edinson Cavani, Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial and Paul Pogba).

Patson Daka

Leicester City have now firmly established themselves as one of the leading clubs in the Premier League, but Jamie Vardy's advancing years had provided a worry on the horizon. The Foxes great has been a key man for so long.

But there were signs of Leicester moving on from their reliance on Vardy last season as Kelechi Iheanacho scored 12 times in the Premier League.

Now, the arrival of Daka could really put Vardy's place under pressure.

The Zambia forward scored 27 goals in 28 league games for Salzburg in 2020-21, adding four assists for a remarkable goal involvement every 63 minutes. By comparison, Vardy delivered every 119 minutes and Iheanacho every 104 minutes.

Despite playing fewer minutes, Daka (101) attempted significantly more shots than Vardy (82) and scored with a greater share of them, too (26.7 per cent versus 18.3 per cent).

Still just 22, Daka looks a great fit for the veteran Vardy's role, taking a comparable 19 per cent of his touches last season in the penalty area (23 per cent for Vardy).

Cristian Romero

The Kane transfer saga is providing an unhelpful distraction, but Tottenham are making moves, bringing in Bryan Gil and Pierluigi Gollini alongside Romero.

The centre-back should be suited to the Premier League, having established himself as one of the most aggressive, physically dominant defenders in Serie A.

Romero ranked ninth among all Serie A players for aerial duel success last season (68 per cent), putting him ahead of the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Matthijs de Ligt.

This was particularly impressive as only 15 players contested more aerial duels per 90 than Romero (5.9).

The Argentina international – who has joined from Atalanta on an initial loan – is an impressive defender on the ground, too, making 3.4 interceptions per 90 to rank second in the division.

He should bolster a Spurs defence now without Toby Alderweireld.

Raphael Varane

There are no shortage of centre-back signings in the Premier League. Ibrahima Konate has arrived at Liverpool but faces a fight to be first choice. The same is not true of Varane.

United hope the World Cup winner can team up with Harry Maguire to make Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side genuine title contenders.

Like Romero, Varane is dominant in the air, leading LaLiga defenders with his 76 per cent success rate in aerial duels last season.

That is an area of need for United, too, as only Leeds United (15) conceded more goals from set-pieces last season excluding penalties than the Red Devils (14).

United conceded a league-high 32 per cent of their goals against in this fashion.

And Varane will also look to set Sancho and Co on their way, having initiated 22 open play sequences that ended with a shot in 2020-21 – behind only Clement Lenglet (24) among LaLiga centre-backs.

Inter Milan have their eye on a Premier League forward. 

With Romelu Lukaku heading back to England, the Nerazzurri are eyeing Anthony Martial.

However, Manchester United do not appear willing to let him go.

 

TOP STORY - UNITED WANT TO KEEP MARTIAL

Inter Milan want Anthony Martial to bolster their attack, according to multiple reports, but it does not sound like he is available. 

The Mail claims United are prepared to reject a £50million offer for the 25-year-old, who is still easing his way back in after injuring his knee in March.

Martial is under contract until 2024, with an option for an additional year at Old Trafford, so there is no urgency for United to move him on. 

 

ROUND-UP

- Meanwhile, Edin Dzeko's move from Roma to Inter is "imminent" according to Fabrizio Romano, with the 35-year-old set to sign through to 2023. 

- United and Arsenal have interest in Bayern Munich midfielder Corentin Tolisso, according to a Bild report, with Juventus and West Ham also rumoured to be possibilities for the Fran. 

- Bild also says Arsenal, Tottenham and Everton are eyeing Borussia Monchengladbach's Denis Zakaria

- Rennes midfielder Eduardo Camavinga is on United's radar but FootMercato reports Paris Saint-Germain could swoop for the 18-year-old despite a need to balance the books following Lionel Messi's addition.

- Leicester City and Sevilla could be set to bid for Schalke defender Ozan Kabak, according to Calciomercato.

- Veteran goalkeeper Sergio Romero is set to join Granada on a free transfer, as per Romano. 

- Everton are considering a move for 24-year-old Antwerp right-back Aurelio Buta, the Sun reports, saying the Belgian club want £3m. 

Harry Kane will be available for Tottenham against Manchester City in their Premier League opener on Sunday, coach Nuno Espirito Santo has suggested.

Kane is quarantining at the club's training ground following his return at the weekend, despite initial reports he had boycotted pre-season amid growing speculation of a move away.

City, Spurs' Sunday opponents, were reported to have tabled a £100million bid for the forward that was rejected, though the reigning Premier League champions remain interested.

Nuno was on Monday due to hold talks with the England captain, whose 23 goals last term secured his third top-flight Golden Boot award, before he suggested Kane could play a part against Pep Guardiola's men.

Asked about players' availability for the City game, Nuno told Sky Sports: "All the players in the squad that work on a daily basis will be options for us, then it is up to us to decide."

Pushed further for an update on Kane, the former Wolves manager repeated his answer almost word for word, adding that Spurs would consider the "best options" from the squad.

After playing an integral role in England's Euro 2020 final run, Kane will be able to train from Thursday with the Tottenham squad – though that time scale may leave his fitness in doubt for Sunday's opener.

Guardiola has been unrelenting in his pursuit of Kane, reiterating his interest in the forward last Friday despite already signing Jack Grealish for a record-breaking £100m fee.

Whether Kane will join Grealish as a City player by the end of the transfer window remains unseen, but Nuno will hope his talisman can kick-start his side's campaign with a win.

Lautaro Martinez is happy at Inter and intends to stay at the club despite strong rumoured interest from Tottenham, according to the forward's agent Alejandro Camano.

Reports from England on Sunday suggested Spurs are looking to complete a £60million (€70.8m) deal for the 23-year-old.

However, Martinez's agent has distanced the Argentina international – who has two more years to run on his Inter contract – from a move away from the Serie A champions.

"Lautaro is an Inter player and is happy with life in Italy. His decision is to stay," Camano told TyC Sports

"While Lautaro is under contract he will not enter conflict with the club. That will never happen."

Martinez has made 132 appearances for Inter in all competitions in his three seasons at San Siro since joining from Racing Club in July 2018.

He has scored 37 goals and assisted 11 more in 100 Serie A outings – only Romelu Lukaku (60) has been directly involved in more goals for the Nerazzurri over that period.

That includes 17 goals in 38 league appearances last season as Inter won their first Scudetto in 11 years.

Martinez's 0.59 goals per 90 minutes in 2020-21 bettered his return of 0.51 in 2019-20 and 0.4 in his debut campaign outside Argentina.

However, Inter are under pressure to raise funds as they try to ease their financial situation, with Achraf Hakimi already leaving in this transfer window for Paris Saint-Germain and Lukaku expected to sign for Chelsea.

Head coach Antonio Conte has also departed and been replaced by Simone Inzaghi since the end of 2020-21.

With speculation continuing to circulate regarding the futures of Martinez and Lukaku, Inter have been tipped to bring in Joaquin Correa and Edin Dzeko before the window closes.

The reigning Italian champions begin their new Serie A campaign with a home match against Genoa on August 21.

Nuno Espirito Santo plans to talk to Harry Kane "as soon as possible" after the striker returned to Tottenham ahead of the new Premier League season.

Kane's future at Spurs remains in doubt after he made clear his desire to leave the club. Manchester City reportedly had an offer of £100million rejected earlier in the transfer window, though the reigning champions still remain the most likely landing spot for last season's Golden Boot winner.

After playing a key role in England’s run to the Euro 2020 final, the 28-year-old did not report for pre-season training on Monday, as the club expected.

Kane released a statement on social media explaining how he would return for duty on Saturday, making clear that was always the plan while adding: "I wouldn't do anything to jeopardise the relationship I have with the fans who have given me such unwavering support during my time with the club."

While he completes a period of isolation and goes through physical testing, Spurs continued their preparations on Sunday with a 1-0 win over Arsenal.

"Harry is with us," Nuno, who was appointed as Tottenham's new head coach at the end of June, confirmed after the game.

"He has to quarantine at The Lodge, but he has already done his first day with the sports scientists, so he is with us.

"I will speak with Harry as soon as possible."

Whether viewed as a potential replacement or a new strike partner for Kane, Tottenham have been linked with a move for Inter forward Lautaro Martinez.

The Serie A side have already sold Achraf Hakimi to Paris Saint-Germain as they look to ease their financial situation in the offseason, while Romelu Lukaku is expected to complete a return to Chelsea in the coming days.

Martinez could be set to follow Inter colleague Lukaku to London, though Nuno was unwilling to discuss potential new arrivals.

Asked about the Argentina international, he replied: "I will not speak about any player. I will only speak about my players, Tottenham players, nothing else."

Son Heung-min scored the only goal against Arsenal, firing past Bernd Leno in the 79th minute after being picked out by Japhet Tanganga's square pass.

Spurs start the new league campaign next Sunday, hosting Manchester City.

Son Heung-min scored the only goal as Tottenham rounded off an unbeaten pre-season by edging out rivals Arsenal 1-0 in the final game of the Mind Series on Sunday.

A tight affair was settled in the 79th minute at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with Son receiving Japhet Tanganga's square pass in the box before firing past Bernd Leno.

Three wins and two draws from their five pre-season games means Nuno Espirito Santo's side head into the Premier League campaign, which begins against reigning champions Manchester City on August 15, unbeaten.

Despite Spurs' victory here moving them level on points with Chelsea, the Blues win the mini-tournament having scored the greater number of goals in their two matches.

Chances were few and far between for the most part. Leno denied Son from point-blank range, while Alexandre Lacazette hit the post from the edge of the box.

Though it was technically a friendly, the competitive nature of the fixture was evident with a crunching Dele Alli tackle on Nicolas Pepe earning a yellow card.

Alli twice went close to breaking the deadlock; the England international hitting the post either side of half-time.

The game appeared to be heading for a stalemate but Son – a scorer in two of the three most recent competitive encounters between the sides – snatched the victory for Spurs 11 minutes from time with his third goal of pre-season.

Mikel Arteta's Arsenal, who launch their Premier League season away at Brentford on August 13, had a chance to equalise late on, but Pierluigi Gollini denied Bukayo Saka from close range.

England international Kieran Trippier has expressed his desire to return from Spain this off-season.

The Atletico Madrid full-back has spent two seasons in Spain, helping Diego Simeone's side win LaLiga in 2020-21.

A former Burnley and Tottenham defender, Trippier has been pursued by Manchester United who are yet to agree a fee with Atletico.

TOP STORY – ARSENAL ENTER TRIPPIER RACE

Arsenal have joined United in targeting Kieran Trippier, reports The Sun.

The Gunners see Trippier as Hector Bellerin's replacement, with the Spaniard having been linked with Inter as he aims to make a move away from north Lonndon.

Atletico are demanding €40million (£34million) for 30-year-old Trippier.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Sunday Mirror are reporting that Harry Kane will need to force through his transfer from Tottenham to Manchester City, after Spurs chairman Daniel Levy's claim the England captain is not for sale. City are reportedly prepared to wait and start the new season without a recognised striker.

- Inter are closing in on a deal for Atalanta's Colombian forward Duvan Zapata, with an offer of €30m on the table, reports Cesar Luis Merlo. Zapata is seen as a replacement for Romelu Lukaku, with the Belgium striker set to exit for Chelsea.

- Atalanta are ramping up their move to sign Chelsea forward Tammy Abraham as part of the three-club shuffle. Fabrizio Romano claims the Atalanta board will meet Chelsea in the next 48 hours, with a price tag of around €40m to be discussed.

- Paris Saint-Germain have held advanced talks with the agent of Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly about a move, reports Foot Mercato.

- Burnley are struggling to complete a move to sign RB Leipzig's Ademola Lookman on loan, according to The Sun.

Jack Grealish and Aston Villa provided a perfect model of how to sell a star player "in the best possible way", Stiliyan Petrov says.

And former Villa captain Petrov feels it is an example Harry Kane and Tottenham should heed as the England captain attempts to join Grealish at Manchester City.

Grealish left Villa Park for £100million this week, having wanted to join a Champions League club.

For Kane, who has already played in Europe's elite club competition, the intention appears to be to join a genuine title contender.

Spurs have fallen away, while City appear well set for their Premier League title defence.

It was reported Kane skipped pre-season training in a bid to force a transfer, although the striker said on Friday he "would never, and have never, refused to train" and was due to return "as planned".

City remain interested, as Pep Guardiola confirmed earlier the same day, but Tottenham are not willing sellers in the same way Villa were, having agreed Grealish's £100m release clause last year.

Luka Modric and Gareth Bale were each at odds with Spurs previously as they sought moves to Real Madrid, and Petrov suggests the "communication" between players and board at the London club is not as effective as at Villa.

"Everybody is blaming Harry Kane, [but] the way Aston Villa has handled Jack Grealish's situation was the prime example," Petrov, one of the founders of Player 4 Player, told Stats Perform.

"They sat down, they negotiated, they have talked about it. They managed to send Jack in the best possible way. Some fans will be unhappy, but many will be happy.

"Don't forget that they will get a really great price tag: £100million for Jack.

"He has given great years as a player for Aston Villa, they sat down, they have done it nicely, the player left in the best possible way, he was back for training, but that comes from the manager, from the coach of the club.

"And sometimes, you know, people blame the players, but don't blame just the players. You know what? It is always conversations, communication and the way of doing it.

"It seems like Tottenham haven't managed to do it for many years, because I can give you a lot of prime examples of a lot of players that ended in the same way. Probably that is the way they have decided to work."

Tottenham have completed the signing of defender Cristian Romero for a reported fee of £47million.

The Argentina international has put pen to paper on a reported five-year contract with the north London club.

The 23-year-old becomes Tottenham's third signing under Nuno Espirito Santo following the arrival of winger Bryan Gil from Sevilla and the loan acquisition of Atalanta goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini, whom Romero played alongside in 2020-21.

Romero is also the second-most expensive transfer in Spurs' history after Tanguy Ndombele's £53.8m switch from Lyon in 2019.

After beginning his career with spells at Belgrano and Genoa, the centre-half failed to make a competitive appearance during his two-year stint with Juventus, spending the entire time out on loan.

Atalanta signed him on loan with a purchase option in September 2020 and Romero went on to play 42 times in all competitions last season as the Bergamo club recorded a third-place finish in Serie A and reached the Coppa Italia final.

Atalanta triggered their purchase option on Romero before then selling him on to Spurs.

Romero's performances led to his senior international debut against Chile prior to this year's Copa America, in which he made three appearances and started the final as Argentina beat Brazil to end their 28-year wait for a major trophy.

His arrival provides a much-needed boost to the Tottenham back line, following the departures of Toby Alderweireld and Juan Foyth earlier in the window.

Romero will compete with Davinson Sanchez, Joe Rodon and Eric Dier for a place in the heart of the defence, and could make his debut when Spurs launch their Premier League campaign against reigning champions Manchester City on August 15.

Tottenham have completed the signing of defender Cristian Romero for a reported fee of £47million.

The Argentina international has put pen to paper on a reported five-year contract with the north London club.

The 23-year-old becomes Tottenham's third signing under Nuno Espirito Santo following the arrival of winger Bryan Gil from Sevilla and the loan acquisition of Atalanta goalkeeper Pierluigi Gollini, whom Romero played alongside in 2020-21.

Romero is also the second-most expensive transfer in Spurs' history after Tanguy Ndombele's £53.8m switch from Lyon in 2019.

After beginning his career with spells at Belgrano and Genoa, the centre-half failed to make a competitive appearance during his two-year stint with Juventus, spending the entire time out on loan.

Atalanta signed him on loan with a purchase option in September 2020 and Romero went on to play 42 times in all competitions last season as the Bergamo club recorded a third-place finish in Serie A and reached the Coppa Italia final.

Atalanta triggered their purchase option on Romero before then selling him on to Spurs.

Romero's performances led to his senior international debut against Chile prior to this year's Copa America, in which he made three appearances and started the final as Argentina beat Brazil to end their 28-year wait for a major trophy.

His arrival provides a much-needed boost to the Tottenham back line, following the departures of Toby Alderweireld and Juan Foyth earlier in the window.

Romero will compete with Davinson Sanchez, Joe Rodon and Eric Dier for a place in the heart of the defence, and could make his debut when Spurs launch their Premier League campaign against reigning champions Manchester City on August 15.

Harry Kane insisted he has never refused to train and will be back at Tottenham "as planned" on Saturday amid uncertainty surrounding his future.

Kane – a target for Manchester City – made headlines on Monday when he did not report for training with Spurs, who refused to comment publicly on the matter.

The England captain was given an extended break after leading the Three Lions to the final of Euro 2020 last month.

Kane has been the subject of intense speculation since suggesting in May that he could leave Spurs during this transfer window.

City are said to have long held an interest in the 28-year-old and reportedly lodged a bid of roughly £100million earlier in the window. On Friday, Pep Guardiola confirmed he wishes to sign Kane, but insisted the saga would be "finished" if Tottenham refused to negotiate.

Kane received criticism from some quarters for failing to report to training under Nuno Espirito Santo, who claimed on Thursday that he was yet to speak to Spurs' talisman.

However, Kane says it was always planned that he would re-join Tottenham's squad on Saturday.

"It's almost ten years since I made my Spurs debut. For every one of those years, you – the fans – have shown me total support and love," a statement posted to Kane's official social media channels read.

"That's why it hurts to read some of the comments that have been made this week, questioning my professionalism.

"While I won't go into the specifics of the situation, I want to clarify that I would never, and have never, refused to train. I will be returning to the club tomorrow, as planned.

"I wouldn't do anything to jeopardise the relationship I have with the fans who have given me such unwavering support during my time with the club.

"This has always been the case as it is today."

Tottenham have so far refused to do business with City over Kane. Any transfer for the striker would almost certainly break the British record, which City themselves set this week with the £100m acquisition of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa.

Coincidentally, Spurs host champions City in their opening game of the 2021-22 Premier League season on August 15.

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