Tottenham boss Antonio Conte may find himself at odds with Daniel Levy over two specific deals when the January transfer window finally opens, according to reports. The north Londoners led a busy recruitment drive over the summer and have been tipped to add some extra quality to their ranks in the new year as Conte looks to prepare his squad for the Premier League run-in.
Tottenham are said to be keen on bringing in a new defender after conceding 18 league goals since the beginning of the campaign, a tally that represents the highest of any club currently in the division’s top four. Conte is likely to already have his targets in mind with just a few weeks until the start of the January window, although the Italian coach may need to convince Levy to sanction a move for his preferred option at the back.
The Times have reported that Conte is eager to sign Alessandro Bastoni at the turn of the year after working with the Inter Milan defender during his time in charge of the Serie A giants. It seems as though Levy would rather explore the idea of a move for RB Leipzig youngster Mohamed Simakan, though, with high-level internal discussions about the 22-year-old having been held in recent weeks.
Simakan has been tipped to make a big move in the not-too-distant future after impressing in Germany over the last two seasons and could well end up joining Tottenham if Levy decides to firm up his interest with an official bid when the transfer market reopens. Any successful deal is highly unlikely to be cheap, though, with the player still tied down to Leipzig until the summer of 2026 as things stand.
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Bastoni, meanwhile, has been mentioned in connection with Tottenham since Conte was appointed in November of last year and is only contracted to Inter Milan until the end of next season. The uncertainty over his future at the San Siro could lead to a sale over the coming months if his current employers feel pressured to cash in, although Levy’s preference to sign Simakan could potentially see Bastoni overlooked in the January transfer window.
It remains to be seen which direction Tottenham will go in at the turn of the year, with Conte almost certain to push for new arrivals as he looks to qualify for next season’s Champions League by guiding the club to another top-four finish. The 53-year-old recently hinted at a desire to increase the size of his squad in January by insisting that even a few injuries could be the difference between meeting expectations and falling short at the end of the campaign.
“We have to face a difficult situation for us,” said Conte. “When you don’t have three or four players in the squad you’re in trouble. We have to manage very well this situation and overcome it together.
“When you play every three days you need to have a deep, strong squad. We have only just started our process. We are playing in the Champions League. We’re trying to improve our situation step by step, you need time and patience. I want to be honest. With my experience, we are doing well but we need the time and patience.”
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