Tottenham trying to hijack Liverpool move for Willian

Tottenham Hotspur are attempting to get one up on their Premier League rivals Liverpool by hijacking the Reds’ move for Anzhi Makhachkala midfielder Willian, the Daily Telegraph has reported.

Willian is free to leave Anzhi as the Russian club try to sell their highest-earners following the withdrawal of funding by the owner, leading to a fire sale that Liverpool were hoping to exploit with the signing of Willian. But Tottenham, long-standing admirers of the former Shakhtar Donetsk playmaker, are lining up a £30m offer of their own.

Spurs tried to sign Willian in January when he was still a Shakhtar player, with chairman Daniel Levy even travelling to Ukraine to try and finalise the deal – but he was unsuccessful and Willian moved to Anzhi instead. The Tottenham Head Coach, Andre Villas-Boas, also tried to sign Willian for Chelsea in his brief time at Stamford Bridge.

Liverpool had been considered favourites to sign the Brazil international but the newspaper believes that living in London could sway Willian’s decision, as well as the long-term interest in him of Villas-Boas. It had been thought Brendan Rodgers was so close to wrapping up the transfer that it would be announced later this week.

Spurs have already spent heavily this summer in re-vamping their attacking line-up, breaking their transfer record – only recently established by the £17m signing of Paulinho – in capturing Roberto Soldado from Valencia for £26m. Willian would set a new record and, the newspaper adds, led credence to the suggestions that Spurs are already spending the money they expect to receive for Gareth Bale from Real Madrid.

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