Tottenham have renewed their interest in Juan Foyth and re-opened discussions over a potential deal for the young centre-back.
Sky Sports News reported last month that Spurs were close to an agreement but Mauricio Pochettino decided to withdraw from talks after Estudiantes’ chief Juan Sebastian Veron – who played with Pochettino for Argentina – demanded more money for the 19-year-old.
It is too soon to say whether Foyth will join Spurs in this window but the club see him as one of the best up-and-coming defenders in the world, and one that matches their profile.
Foyth has a way to go to reach Toby Alderweireld’s level but he may be thought of as a natural successor to the Belgium international.
That’s not to suggest the club are preparing to part with Alderweireld but it is part of their pragmatic recruitment process to develop long-term successors to all their players.
Foyth’s most notable quality is his ability on the ball. Pochettino’s defenders have to be able to play out from the back, not just to the full-backs, but also to play cutting passes through midfield and over the top into the forwards. Foyth has shown he can do that, not only for Estudiantes, but also for Argentina U20s.
There is an air of composure and confidence about everything he does both on and off the ball. Should he develop under the likes of Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen, he has the potential to become a ball-playing centre-back of the highest quality.
He is still young and very inexperienced, however, and should certainly be seen as a player for the future.
USA youth captain Cameron Carter-Vickers has not progressed as quickly as hoped and he does not appear close to competing for a first-team place, having been exposed against top teams in the International Champions Cup in pre-season.
Should Foyth arrive at Spurs, he is likely to surpass Carter-Vickers in the pecking order.
Who else is looking at him?
Foyth’s ability has caught the attention of a number of clubs, not just Spurs. He was particularly impressive at the U20 World Cup in May, where he was also watched by scouts of clubs such as Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus.
For any top team looking to add a ball-playing centre-back for the future, Foyth would be of interest but the above two clubs in particular have been looking to recruit a youngster in this window.
However, reports over agreements with these clubs should be taken with a pinch of salt. Spurs had been close to an agreement last month but Pochettino felt Estudiantes were asking too much for the defender, and mentions of other clubs might well have been exaggerated to force Tottenham’s hand.
It is no coincidence that Foyth remains with Estudiantes and very much on the market some three or four weeks later, which has led Spurs to carefully re-establish discussions over a deal with less than two weeks of the transfer window remaining.