Tottenham have been told that pairing Stefan de Vrij with Cristian Romero could deliver a partnership similar to the one that Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld enjoyed in the heyday.
Former Leeds striker Noel Whelan believes that Spurs signing the 29-year-old from Inter Milan could give them a “formidable” pairing alongside the Argentina international, who is currently on loan with an option to buy.
A report from Football Insider claims that De Vrij has told friends that he is interested in a January move to north London.
The report adds that the Dutchman is aware of Spurs’ interest and wants to listen to their proposal.
De Vrij made 32 Serie A appearances as Inter won their first title in a decade under Antonio Conte.
But with Conte now in charge at Tottenham, several Inter players have already been tipped to follow him.
Chief among those targets is De Vrij, who Conte wants as part of his defence alongside Romero. And Whelan believes the pair could form a ‘rugged’ partnership at the Premier League club.
He told Football Insider: “De Vrij and Christian Romero could become Spurs legends like Toby Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen.
“Alderweireld and Vertonghen are two legends of the club; they were solid at the back. They were a formidable partnership, and that’s what you need.
“When you think about these famous partnerships throughout the years, Man United had Steve Bruce and Gary Pallister, Arsenal had Tony Adams and Martin Keown. They stick in the mind because they were solid, good defenders.
De Vrij a world-beater
“And that’s what Spurs need to find. They need that partnership to be rugged at the back and bordering on horrible.
“De Vrij has showed he is a world-beater playing at a very high level.”
Vertonghen and Alderweireld were an outstanding partnership that guided Spurs to close shaves in the Premier League title race and a Champions League final in 2019.
However, the level of both players eventually dropped and they joined Benfica and Al-Duhail in 2020 and 2021 respectively.
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