Report: Spurs eye up long-term replacement for Jan Vertonghen

Image: SpursWeb

Jan Vertonghen has been arguably Tottenham Hotspur’s most consistent player in recent seasons.

The central defender continues to put in impressive displays at the heart of the Spurs defence week in, week out in his typical cool and calm manner.

The 32-year-old is out of contract in North London at the end of next season after the club decided to take up the option of a one-year extension in December (Spurs official).

The Belgian was limited to just 22 Premier League appearances this season due to two respective hamstring injuries along with suspension for his red card at Arsenal (Transfermarkt).

According to a report by Football Insider, Spurs have identified Bristol City defender Lloyd Kelly as a long-term replacement for Vertonghen on the left side of the central defensive partnership.

The 20-year-old has typically been operating at left-back for the Championship side who narrowly missed out on a play-off spot this season.

Robins manager Lee Johnson recently described the player’s physical stature as being an ‘absolute beast’ and has tipped him to become a mainstay at centre half.

Johnson told the BBC Radio Bristol’s Sound of the City show on 10/09/2018: “I think I have been quite vocal in my admiration of Lloyd Kelly as a footballer.

“I have to say he was absolutely fantastic in the game against Switzerland and so was Jay Dasilva [who is at Bristol City this season on loan from Chelsea].

“You could really see those two boys had been playing senior football and training with the men.

“Physically in the Championship, Lloydy is 6ft 3in, but he looks a bit slight. But if you see him at his own level he looks an absolute beast. That athleticism, his height, and even his chest now – we have spent a lot of money making sure he gets the right nutrition and the right supplements and you can really see that coming to fruition now.

“We was a couple of years ago a real beanpole but had that raw potential to be a top athlete. Now he is proving that.

“He played centre half for England in a four, with Jay Dasilva at left back. It was a really good game and England played really well.

“The concentration levels from Lloyd were good, obviously at centre half he is still learning at Championship level but at left back he has excelled.

“I think he will be a centre half as he ages and progresses and gets that experience but at the moment he is doing a sterling job at left back.”

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