TOTTENHAM are ready to battle bitter rivals Arsenal for £60million-rated Leicester star James Maddison.
Arsenal have been keen on signing James Maddison for some time nowCredit: AFP
But the Gunners’ local rivals Tottenham are also interested in signing the England aceCredit: GETTY
Both Spurs and Arsenal are long-term admirers of the playmaker, who is enjoying the best goalscoring season of his Leicester career with 13 strikes.
He has just over two years left on his current contract.
The Gunners have been linked with Maddison again in recent days but Tottenham are also understood to have a genuine interest in signing the 25-year-old this summer.
Spurs shipped out three attacking midfielders in January, selling Dele Alli to Everton and sending Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso out on loan to Lyon and Villarreal respectively.
Boss Antonio Conte is a fan of Maddison and keen to increase his attacking options.
But the Italian’s No.1 priority is signing a new left-sided centre back, so a move for Maddison may depend on Tottenham being able to sell Ndombele and/or Lo Celso.
Reports suggest Lyon will not be taking up the option to re-sign the France international that they sold to Spurs for an initial £54m fee in 2019.
Villarreal are interested in a permanent deal for Lo Celso, however, which would boost Conte’s war chest.
Maddison may regard a fresh start as the best way to boost his fading hopes of playing at the World Cup later this year.
He missed out on Euro 2020 and has not returned to the England squad despite his impressive form this season.
Leicester face some tough decisions this summer.
Youri Tielemans is yet to sign a new contract and will have only a year left on his current deal this summer.
The Foxes would be reluctant to lose two key players from their midfield in the same summer but a big offer for Maddison would give them a chance to revamp their squad.