The Athletic have revealed that Matt Doherty only found out about Atletico Madrid’s interest in signing him 24 hours before the transfer deadline.

Tottenham’s decision to terminate Doherty’s contract on transfer deadline day, thus allowing him to sign for Atletico, came as a surprise to everyone.

Matt Doherty

Photo by Chris Brunskill/Fantasista/Getty Images

Football.London’s Alasdair Gold explained on Wednesday that the initial plan was to loan out the Irishman to the La Liga club until the end of the season without an option or an obligation to buy.

However, the journalist revealed that Spurs realised after Djed Spence’s loan move to Rennes that they had reached the limit of the total first-team players who could be loaned out (eight) and thus decided to terminate Doherty’s contract.

Gold added that the right-back’s Tottenham teammates were shocked by his sudden exit.

The Athletic have now reported that the player himself was caught off guard, hearing first of Atletico’s interest very late on Monday night.

The report states that the former Wolves man had been informed a couple of days earlier by the North Londoners that they had no plans of letting him go, only for the club to change their tune at the last moment.

Spurs Web Opinion

I suspect that once the Porro deal went through, Conte decided that he would rather have a defensively sound backup for the right wing-back role in the form of Emerson, rather than Doherty.  However, one wonders why that decision was not made sooner.

Tottenham have essentially sacrificed a transfer fee of around £10m by terminating Doherty’s contract as a couple of Premier League clubs would have likely expressed interest in the 30-year-old had he been put in the shop window earlier.

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