Ajax have been put off a January move for former player Jan Vertonghen in the summer due to Spurs’ asking price and Vertonghen’s excessive wage demands.
The Belgian’s contract expires in the summer and unlike teammate Toby Alderweireld, he’s yet to agree to a new deal with the Lilywhites.
And according to Dutch media outlet De Telegraaf, Ajax have made an approach for the 32-year-old with Vertonghen reportedly open to a return to Amsterdam after an assurance by the player’s agent Tom De Mul to Ajax’s director of football affairs, Marc Overmars.
The Belgian enjoyed nine successful years at Ajax before his move to England in 2012. He’s gone on to make over 300 appearances for the Lilywhites and while he’s starting to show signs of demise, Vertonghen was widely regarded as one of the league’s best centre-halves under Mauricio Pochettino, forming a formidable partnership with Alderweireld at the heart of the Spurs backline for a number of years.
Ajax, however, have been put off by the £12m fee that the north Londoners want for Vertonghen’s services and aren’t willing to match his current wage at Spurs – which is believed to be around £70,000-a-week. Overall, the Dutch giants view the overall package as too costly for a 32-year-old who has no re-sale value.
It’s understood that Overmars will either wait until Spurs’ and Vertonghen’s demands are lowered or he will entrust 20-year-old Perr Schuurs to provide cover at centre-back. At the moment, it’s unknown whether the club are interested in taking Vertonghen in the summer on a free transfer if the Belgian doesn’t renew his contract at Tottenham.
With Matthijs de Ligt departing in the summer and Daley Blind ruled out for the foreseeable future with a heart condition, Ajax’s options at centre-back are limited. Joel Veltman and Lisandro Martinez are currently the favoured pairing with the inexperienced Schuurs and defensive midfielder Edson Alvarez other options.