Bayer Leverkusen have no intention of selling Jonathan Tah or Piero Hincapie as Premier League duo Nottingham Forest and Tottenham Hotspur eye up a deadline day raid of the Bundesliga giants, managing director Simon Rolfes tells Kicker.
A couple of years ago, Tah was one of Europe’s most promising young defenders; likened to Virgil van Dijk and reportedly a target for the continent’s biggest hitters.
That Tah is still a Leverkusen player approaching his 27th birthday is – with all due respect to one of Germany’s headline clubs – an indication as to how his development has plateaued eight seasons after arriving from Hamburg. Nottingham Forest are keen, per Alan Nixon; presumably in the hope that Tah can still live up to his early promise at the City Ground.
Hincapie, six years Tah’s junior, will be hoping to avoid the same fate that befell his fellow centre-half; 90Min reporting that the Ecuadorian is keen on a move as he looks to make good on all that potential.
Tottenham, BILD add, have offered £20 million for the one-time Celtic target. Hincapie, left-footed and versatile, could be a replacement for Barcelona loanee Clement Lenglet in North London.
But, with so little time to find a replacement, it would take something very special to convince Leverkusen to cash in on the final day of the window.
“We will not give up Jon (Tah),” says Rolfes, the former Germany midfielder. “We won’t give (Hincapie) away either.”
Hincapie impressed for Ecuador at the Qatar World Cup; his composure and passing range standing out even as the South American outfit bowed out at the group-stage. Before the tournament began, Hincapie spoke excitedly about a potential move to Antonio Conte’s Spurs side too, in conversation with Marca.
“When I read or hear that so many teams love me, it means I’m doing something right,” Hincapie said.
“In any case, I try to focus on doing my best with Bayer Leverkusen. I try to continue improving so that, if necessary, I can make the leap to another team in the future.”
Tottenham should complete one deadline day arrival, at least; Pedro Porro arriving from Sporting Lisbon despite a late bump in the road.