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Football London
Football London
Emma de Duve

Tottenham poised to steal Arsenal target and land £45m dream deal amid Champions League battle

Antonio Conte will be hoping his Tottenham side can secure Champions League football for next season, which is likely to help them target players in the summer transfer window. Spurs are currently fourth in the league, sitting three points above Arsenal, who do have a game in hand.

The Lilywhites had a perfect Saturday with Man United and Arsenal both losing their matches, two of Tottenham's key rivals in the top four race. The weekend was then topped off with a win for the Italian's side, with a 4-0 victory at Villa Park.

January signings Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski have both made an immediate impact on the Spurs side, with the latter picking up another goal against Aston Villa. Conte will hope his side can finish the season in a strong position and then have a successful transfer window.

READ MORE: James Maddison transfer latest: Spurs battle Arsenal, Hazard recommendation, Leicester demand

There is already a growing list of potential targets for Tottenham, with the likes Sam Johnstone, Jesse Lingard and Christian Eriksen all set to be free agents when the transfer window comes around. Someone who is still under contract but could still be a Paratici target is James Maddison.

The 25-year-old is currently having the most successful goal-scoring season of his Leicester career, having already bagged 13 this season. Maddison has also registered eight assists in his 42 appearances and he has started in 21 out of 27 Premier League games.

In 2020 former Spurs boss Harry Redknapp spoke about how impressed he was with the attacker. "I first saw James play in a reserve game at QPR, at half-time, I said to his manager Steven Pressley, 'my God can he play or what, that kid' and he said, 'yeah, he's going to be a big player'."

Maddison has been on Tottenham's radar previously and in 2015 a deal seemed close for the 25-year-old to make the move to north London, which was encouraged by Redknapp. However, the move never became a reality and the midfielder has gone on to have successful spells for both his club and country.

A move to north London could be on the cards once again for Maddison, when the summer comes around, with reports suggesting interest from both Spurs and Arsenal. Both Conte and Mikel Arteta are said to be a fan of the midfielder, who has a current market value of £45million, so it could be a battle to sign him.

However, if the Lilywhites manage to secure a top-four spot and can promise Champions League football next season, that will give them a major boost in the race for Maddison. The 25-year-old has proven his quality in the last few years and although Tottenham's front three are currently thriving, there is still room for more incomings, to help Spurs make the next step up.

A signing like Maddison is likely to depend on the outgoing business Spurs manage in the upcoming window. With Dele Alli making the permanent move in January, it leaves Bryan Gil, Giovani Lo Celso and Tanguy Ndombele as the three players who are set to return in the summer.

With the latter two in particular, likely to play in a similar role to the 25-year-old, his move to Tottenham could depend on if they are moved on after their return. It will then also depend on if Conte can see Maddison fitting into his current Spurs setup.

The midfielder has previously praised both Harry Winks and Harry Kane, indicating his high regard of the Tottenham squad. "Harry Winks is another good example, a very good passer of the ball...[he] could get it through, with a quick two-touch wrap pass. That’s the quality of opposition we play against. There isn’t a moment where you can switch off," Maddison said a couple of years ago.

"Harry Kane… best centre forward in world football for me. People tried to talk because he didn’t score for a couple of games but goes back to that old saying, form is temporary but class is permanent," the current Leicester attacker tweeted during the summer last year.

With the improvements seen under Conte at Tottenham and if they manage to secure a top-four spot, it could be a very attractive move for Maddison. It will then depend on the money The Foxes ask for and not only whether Daniel Levy is prepared to pay the asking price, but whether the 52-year-old and Paratici feel the 25-year-old could make the required impact.

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