• Jean-Clair Todibo has formed a key part of Nice's impressive defence this season 
  • Tottenham are in the market for central defensive cover in the January window 
  • Big Ange on connecting with his players and why he doesn't do small talk - It's All Kicking Off hosts Chris Sutton and Ian Ladyman spoke exclusively to Spurs boss 

Tottenham are reportedly ready to rival Manchester United for the signing of Nice central defender Jean-Clair Todibo in January.

The French international has been a key part of a Nice defence that has conceded just four goals in 13 matches in Ligue 1 this season.

Nice's strong defensive record has provided a platform for the team to push into second in the table, just one point behind league leaders Paris Saint Germain.

According to the Evening Standard, Tottenham have included Todibo on their shortlist of central defensive targets for the January transfer window as they looked to bolster their options after losing Mickey Van de Ven to a long-term injury.

The 23-year-old would reportedly be available for available for £39million, but Spurs would have to convince Todibo to move amid Nice's title challenge and spurn interest from across Europe.

Tottenham are currently facing a defensive crisis with Cristian Romero set to serve the final match of a three-game suspension against Man City, while Van de Ven is expected to be absent until the New Year with a hamstring injury.

Ange Postecoglou opted to line-up in the 2-1 home defeat against Aston Villa with a defensive consisting entirely of full-backs.

The Tottenham boss opted against using Eric Dier, with Ben Davies partnering Emerson Royal in central defence.

Mail Sport understands Spurs are prioritising a centre-back and a striker in the next two windows, with new technical director Johan Lange formulating a plan of action ahead of January.

Crystal Palace defender Marc Guehi and Everton starlet Jarrad Branthwaite could also be on the January wishlist. 

As for Todibo, Manchester United are among the clubs to have a long-standing interest in the defender.

Mail Sport reported back in August that the Red Devils viewed Todibo as an option at centre-back, as Harry Maguire considered a move to West Ham.

The England defender ultimately stayed at the club, despite David Moyes' side tabling bids of around £30million.

Todibo has previously acknowledged a move to a 'top club' would boost his prospects at international level with France.

The 23-year-old made his international debut in September in a friendly against Germany, before winning his second cap in France's 14-0 win over Gibraltar earlier this month.

Todibo told L'Equipe in September that he would not rush into a decision on his future after a previous failed move to Barcelona, with the defender admitting he is guaranteed first team football at Nice.  

'I can’t lie by saying that I didn’t think about saying to myself that I perhaps need to play at a “top club” to increase my chances, but there are guarantees of playing at Nice,' Todibo said.

'I didn’t want to make the wrong choice. I wait for people to present me with full projects. 

'What is expected of me? Why bring me in? You can’t arrive at a club like that. I know what I have at Nice. Why step into the unknown.'


It's All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football.

It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube, Apple Music and Spotify.

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2023-11-28T18:17:42Z dg43tfdfdgfd