Tottenham have made a stunning late play to hi-jack Arsenal’s move for Saint-Etienne centre-back William Saliba, claims French outlet RMC Sport.
The Gunners have been locked in talks to sign Saliba for a number of weeks and were understood to be close to landing the highly rated teenager.
Arsenal had reportedly locked in a deal worth as much as €30m (£26.9m) to sign Saliba and agreed to loan the 18-year-old back to Saint-Etienne for next season.
However, it has now emerged Tottenham have trumped Arsenal’s offer by offering the full €30m, excluding bonuses.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side were linked with a move for the teenage centre-back earlier in the summer and have stepped up their pursuit as they eye a replacement for Toby Alderweireld.
The Belgium international has a £25m release clause in his existing deal, which has 12 months left to run, and is expected to leave Tottenham this month.
Tottenham were interested in signing Joachim Andersen from Sampdoria but the Denmark international has instead joined Lyon in a deal worth as much as €30m.
Saint-Etienne will now discuss Tottenham’s offer on Saturday and it’s unclear whether Arsenal will return with a counter bid due to the fact they are already working off a restricted budget.
The Ligue 1 outfit had a far better win ratio (69.2%) in the league when Saliba started compared to when he didn’t feature from the off (40%).