Everton midfielder – and Tottenham target – Ross Barkley has been given an ultimatum today by manager Ronald Koeman, with The Sun reporting that he has been given a week to sign a contract extension.
The Sun had previously reported that Spurs are firm favourites to sign the England international should he refuse to sign a new deal, and Koeman’s comments today have fuelled the fire.
Speaking earlier on today, Koeman said: “Still one week, time for him to decide. The board is working a long time for Ross to stay for a long period.
“It’s up to the player but we don’t wait until August. We need an answer if he will accept the contract or we sign a player. I don’t know, it’s up to the player, he needs to make a decision.”
The 23-year-old has endured a strained relationship with the Everton boss all season; openly criticised at times, he was left out of the starting eleven for the defeat to Swansea City last weekend.
Barkley has endured a frustrating two years at Goodison Park on the pitch but has shown signs of his best this season, scoring four times and assisting eight as the Toffees sit in seventh place in the table.
In more pressing matters, reports in Italy are suggesting that Serie A side Inter Milan are contemplating a move for Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino if their main target fails to materialise.
According to Football Italia, Inter are looking to bring Chelsea manager Antonio Conte in after the sacking Stefano Pioli earlier in the week but – if the Blues win the title on Friday– this looks an unlikely move.
As a result, Inter have earmarked Pochettino as their second-choice after the Argentine has taken Tottenham to the verge of the Premier League title two years in a row.
The Italian giants are after a manager to re-discover past success; seven years ago they were winning the Champions League, whereas this season they sit 7th in Serie A – 29 points behind Juventus.
Meanwhile, the Evening Standard has reported that Tottenham would block any potential move that Manchester United may make this summer for England midfielder Eric Dier.
Jose Mourinho had shown his interest in the 23-year-old – touted as a potential replacement for the veteran Michael Carrick – but reports now suggest that the North London side will reject all offers.
Despite being pushed out of his favoured defensive midfield position by Victor Wanyama and Mousa Dembele, Dier signed a new five-year deal last September and is reportedly happy at Spurs.
Dier has made 33 Premier League appearances this season, being utilised as part of Pochettino’s experimental three-man defence for the majority of the campaign, and is an integral part of the side.
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