Tottenham will need in excess of £50m to sign James Maddison

Tottenham will need in excess of £50m to sign James Maddison - Reuters/Andrew Couldridge
Tottenham will need in excess of £50m to sign James Maddison - Reuters/Andrew Couldridge

Tottenham Hotspur are set to move for James Maddison but have been warned that the transfer fee will be over £50 million.

Maddison is a priority target for new Tottenham head coach Ange Postecoglou and the England international will be sold this summer following Leicester’s relegation to the Championship.

The attacking midfielder has just over a year left on his contract and Postecoglou has given his new club the green light to make an offer this month.

Leicester are ready to demand a significant fee, however, and it is understood their initial asking price is over £50 million.

Though there is an acceptance that Maddison can leave the club, Leicester are insisting that his market value is high due to a number of factors including his statistics, position and ‘homegrown’ status.

After signing Maddison for a total £25 million from Norwich City in June 2018, there is also a 15 per cent sell-on clause from any profit which will go to his former club.

With director of football Jon Rudkin likely to handle negotiations, a summer saga could be looming with Maddison, who is also a target for Newcastle United.

Tottenham will hope that Leicester drop their initial asking price but recent history suggests that it could prove difficult.

Leicester have been notoriously tough negotiators with player sales since winning the Premier League title in 2016, raising over £320 million.

N’Golo Kante (£32 million to Chelsea), Danny Drinkwater (£35 million to Chelsea), Riyad Mahrez (£60 million to Manchester City), Harry Maguire (£80 million to Manchester United), Ben Chilwell (£45 million to Chelsea) and Wesley Fofana (£70 million to Chelsea) have all departed for big fees, with discussions frequently drawn out affairs.

Leicester’s traditional model is to sell a key asset each year and the Midlands club will return to that strategy this summer after declining to move any players in the summer of 2021.

Rudkin is also working on appointing a new manager and is understood to have ramped up the interview process this week.

Dean Smith held talks with Rudkin and chairman Aiyawatt Srivaddhanaprabha last week in what was effectively an interview, and he remains in contention to land the job on a permanent basis.

Manchester City’s first-team coach Enzo Maresca, Steven Gerrard, Scott Parker and Ipswich’s Kieran McKenna are also candidates but a move for Graham Potter, the former Chelsea manager, is regarded as a non-starter following the club’s drop into the Championship.