Tottenham transfer target Nathan Ake urged to take 'step up' as Arsenal, Chelsea also keen

Posted Wednesday, February 12, 2020 by

Jose Mourinho is lining up a £40million swoop for the Dutch international as he looks to replace the ageing Jan Vertonghen.

Former Leeds forward Whelan hailed Ake's development in recent seasons and claimed he would improve Tottenham's defence.

He told Football Insider: "There's no doubt [Tottenham] need to freshen it up [at the back].

"He's been linked with moves back to Chelsea, he's been looked at by Arsenal. There's a lot of clubs looking at Nathan Ake.

Tottenham transfer target Nathan Ake urged to take 'step up' as Arsenal, Chelsea also keen
Nathan Ake has been urged to take the 'step up' (Image: GETTY)

"Since leaving Chelsea he's really come on leaps and bounds and developed into a very good centre half.

"But I think now, come the end of the season, no matter where Bournemouth end up, whether they're still in the Premier League or they get relegated, I think it's probably time for him to take that step up to a big club."

Toby Alderweireld, 30, and Vertonghen, 32, are both at the back ends of their careers and will need to be replaced in the near future.

Tottenham signed Davinson Sanchez in 2017 and the 23-year-old has impressed fans and pundits.

The Colombia international will need a new centre-back partner when the Belgian duo retire and Ake could be available if Bournemouth are relegated.

The Cherries are two points clear of the relegation zone but have played a game more than 18th-place West Ham.

Bournemouth climbed out of the drop zone after winning two of their last three games.

Ake is a versatile defender and has played at both centre-back and full-back for Bournemouth.

His ability to play in different positions is part of the reason he has been touted as a replacement for Vertonghen at Tottenham.

Mourinho was expected to improve Spurs' defence when he arrived, but the Portuguese manager has struggled to sure up the back four.

Spurs have conceded 32 goals in the Premier League this season, more than Manchester United, 29, and Sheffield United, 24.

Mourinho will need to address Tottenham's defensive issues next season and may move for Ake if the price is right.

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