According to CalcioMercato, both Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United will battle it out to sign Inter Milan defender Stefan De Vrij.
The 30-year-old has been with Inter since arriving on a free transfer from Lazio in 2018 and has made 181 appearances for the Serie A giants, scoring seven goals and registering seven assists in that time (Transfermarkt).
With his contract set to expire at the end of the season, though, De Vrij could well leave the club the same way he arrived – with no fee changing hands.
According to a report from TuttoMercatoWeb last week, De Vrij himself is ‘lukewarm’ on the idea of putting pen to paper on a new deal with Inter. Meanwhile, Football Insider have claimed Antonio Conte has made contact with the Dutch defender about joining him at Spurs.
De Vrij is free to leave in the summer of 2023, and can agree a deal for his next destination from January onward. If the player is indeed reluctant to sign a new deal, Inter have two options – lose him for nothing in the summer, or sell up in January and get whatever fee they can.
The best clue as to what will happen could lie in the words of De Vrij’s agent, Federico Pastorello. He previously told TuttoMercatoWeb that ‘February-March will be a good time to make certain choices.’
He has now told CalcioMercato: “It will probably be his last important contract and when you’re due, you can also decide whether to have a new experience in a new country, in a new championship.
“Having said that, however, his attachment to Inter is very strong and I do not exclude that he may decide to stay.”
The report also claims Erik ten Hag could be keen to continue his “Dutchising” of the Manchester United squad, while Conte would be happy to have “one of his pillars back” to bolster the Spurs defence.
Spurs Web Opinion
By the sounds of it, De Vrij is not going anywhere in January. He’s a quality defender who has tonnes of experience and obviously has a great connection with Conte, which would make him a valuable asset for Spurs. Whether we are willing to wait until the summer, when our defensive needs are so urgent, remains to be seen.
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