ARLINGTON, TX - JUNE 3: Forward Leandro Damiao #9 of Brazil attempts a shot as goal keeper Jesus Corona #12 of Mexico defends during the first half of a soccer game at Cowboys Stadium on June 3, 2012 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Brandon Wade/Getty Images)
Interesting reports are swirling from some of the less reputable rumour sources, as apparently Tottenham Hotspur is about to re-launch their bid to sign Internacional striker Leandro Damião. Goal's Greg Stobart quotes a new bid worth approximately €19 million (£15m) from Spurs in their pursuit of the Brazilian striker.
Damião's agent has given comments which correspond with these rumours, as Vinicius Prates told Terra:
"I am here in England and there may well be a new offer from Tottenham for Damião, but there is still nothing official - only speculation."
It is interesting to see if this bid can re-start productive discussions between Tottenham and Internacional over the striker. Internacional vice president Luciano Davi has indicated that the club values Leandro higher, yet may be willing to sell, saying:
"There has been no official offer for Damião. We don't intend to sell him because we have problems in attack, but we can't rule out a sale. It will depend on the will of the player. Damião has already proved himself to be worth much more than €20 million."Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas has made well-known his interest in signing a new striker. Jermain Defoe is the only experienced first-team striker on the Spurs roster, with youngster Harry Kane supplementing (and yet to make his Premier League debut). Rumors had long swirled on Emmanuel Adebayor returning to Tottenham on a full transfer, but the Togolese's wage demands seem to have rendered that potential move all but dead.
There are certainly reasons for skepticism in a potential Damião move to Tottenham. There has been over a year of rumours swirling around a move from Internacional for the striker, yet no move. Tottenham has not spent anywhere near the £16 million+ it would take to acquire Leandro since their Dimitar Berbatov sale of 2008, which funded a summer of spending that saw David Bentley, Luka Modric, and Roman Pavluychenko arrive on transfer fees near that number.
However, there are reasons for optimism. Internacional seem more interested than ever before in cashing in on their highly-regarded striker. Tottenham Hotspur and Internacional are club partners, and were able to in 2010 to arrange the transfer of Sandro.
Andre Villas-Boas has pushed heavily for a striker, and Damião would very much be a prototypical #9 for his system. And Daniel Levy proved in 2008 that when he raises a war chest from a sale, he is willing to reinvest immediately. With Luka Modric's departure looming, the fee raised from that could help fund a deal for the Brazilian.
Nothing is certain in these days, but all rumours seem to point that Andre Villas-Boas and Daniel Levy are putting a full effort into acquiring a top tier striker before the start of the Premier League season. Stay tuned for the next episode of As #weneedastriker Turns.