Tottenham Hotspur have announced the signing of Valencia striker Roberto Soldado for a club record fee reported to be around £26million.
The 28 year old, who scored 80 times in 149 appearances for Valencia, was made manager Andre Villas-Boas’s priority signing this summer after they club failed to lure Christian Benteke from Aston Villa.
“We are delighted to announce that we have reached agreement with Valencia for the transfer of Roberto Soldado subject to medical,” the club statement said after a delay in the finalising of the deal due to agents fees prevented it from being announced earlier in the week.
Soldado becomes Spurs’ third signing this summer behind FC Twente winger Nacer Chadli and Corinthians midfielder Paulinho whose £17million capture broke the North Londoners previous transfer record.
The news comes amid increasing speculation that Gareth Bale will be joining Real Madrid this summer and reports today suggested that Spurs have already begun negotiating with the Spanish giants.
Some newspapers carried stories that Spurs chairman Daniel Levy was looking to use Alvaro Morata as a makeweight in the deal though the Primera División are unlikely to let the young no.9 who is so highly rated go and will push Fabio Coentrao or Angel Di Maria as the players who they are willing to part with to sign Bale.
Levy who has developed a reputation as a tough negotiator though is determined that any deal to make him part with the club’s prized asset will be done on his terms.
The news that he is setting out such a stall will at least seem to Madrid that he is willing to negotiate after their first offer of £86million was met with silence as Levy maintained his earlier stance that Spurs would not sell Bale this summer.
It appears though from a number of briefings to the press from Bale’s that he is determined to get his move this summer and feels that the club should honour his wishes by entering into the process of negotiating with Madrid.
Bale reported to duty with Spur yesterday but did not train as he received treatment on a muscle strain that was said to have kept him out of playing during the club’s preseason tour of Asia.
Since though it has become apparent that Bale was less than willing to risk picking up an injury on the poor pitches the matches against Sunderland and a South Asia representative team took place that may jeopardise his move to Madrid this summer.