Davinson Sanchez has reportedly informed Ajax he wants to leave the club amid links to Tottenham Hotspur.
According to Simon Jones of the Mail on Sunday, the centre-back advised team bosses he was not in the right condition to play against Heracles Almelo on Saturday and was left out of the squad as a result.
“Ajax have offered Sanchez an improved contract, but he has set his sights on a move to Tottenham, who are poised to open the bidding with a £28 million offer” Jones reported.
It’s also noted that Inter Milan, Barcelona and Real Madrid have been keeping an eye on the progress of the Colombian, although Spurs are leading the race to land him. Ajax are said to value the 21-year-old at around £40 million.
Sanchez emerged as a key performer for Ajax last term, excelling as the team reached the final of the UEFA Europa League.
As football writer Seb Stafford-Bloor noted, the player made extraordinary progress during his first season in the Netherlands:
Seb Stafford-Bloor @SebSB
Ajax reportedly paid less than £4m for Davinson Sanchez a year ago and are now set to make a £30m profit in 13 months.
Sanchez undoubtedly matured with Ajax and is one of the most exciting defensive prospects in football.
The youngster can do it all. He has the physical attributes needed to cope in the Premier League, is powerful in the air and strong in the tackle. But Sanchez is a capable footballer too, able to carry the ball forward and distribute with intelligence.
It’s easy to imagine Sanchez thriving under the guidance of Mauricio Pochettino and alongside players like Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen in a back three. Spurs fans have had to be patient in regard to the club’s first capture of this transfer window, although the Ajax man would be worth the wait.
James Baylis – AMA/Getty Images
Jones also reported that Tottenham may consider ending their pursuit of Everton midfielder Ross Barkley should they sign Celta Vigo man Pape Cheikh Diop.
“Pochettino admires Everton and England midfielder Barkley, but Tottenham have yet to bid for the 23-year-old as they believe he is overpriced with a year remaining on his contract,” Jones said.
As Andy Hunter of the Guardian noted, Everton manager Ronald Koeman recently said Barkley could stay with the Toffees if their valuation isn’t met:
Andy Hunter @AHunterGuardian
Koeman on Barkley: “No offers on table. If there is still no interest (when window closes) he’ll stay part of the team.”
The England midfielder has under a year left to run on his contract with Everton, and Koeman revealed earlier in the transfer window that the player had asked to leave. According to Jones, Chelsea and Arsenal are also interested in Barkley.
There’s no doubt the midfielder has a lot of talent, although he’s struggled for consistency in recent years. Per Squawka Football, he’s still been a threat in the final third regardless:
Squawka Football @Squawka
Ross Barkley’s goal involvement in the Premier League:
Big improvement. https://t.co/yEv6KFmttL
Tottenham have been slow in their recruitment this summer, although their first XI remains arguably the best in the Premier League. However, players like Sanchez, Diop and Barkley would bolster the squad ahead of what will be a long campaign.
Pochettino has a fine reputation for developing young players, and the prospect of playing for a team challenging for trophies will appeal to the aforementioned trio. But it’s difficult to see them forcing their way into the Spurs starting XI.