• Premier League

AVB opens door to Spurs striker signing

ESPN staff
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Andre Villas-Boas is ready to raid the market for the right player © Getty Images
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Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has rubbished claims that Jermain Defoe needs surgery, but he has admitted he may still dip his toe in the transfer market for a striker.

Spurs' shock FA Cup exit at Leeds on Sunday exposed a flaw in the make-up of Villas-Boas' squad as he was forced to start with attacking midfielder Clint Dempsey as his lead striker in the absence of Defoe and Emmanuel Adebayor and while he insists he can plot a path to success this season, it seems he is eager to bolster his options in the next couple of days.

Even though he has ruled out an expensive move for Sevilla striker Alvaro Negredo and distanced himself from rumours linking Spurs with a bid for Celtic's Gary Hooper, Villas-Boas seems to be open to a new hit-man being added to his ranks.

"We are happy to take the risk and stay with the strikers we have at the moment, but that doesn't mean we are not looking at other possibilities," stated the Tottenham boss, who has again been linked with Brazilian forward Leandro Damiao in recent days.

"We have had good news on Defoe's injury and it is not true that he will require surgery, so this is extremely important for us and I am also extremely happy with the way Clint Dempsey is playing in the forward position.

"The goal that he scored on Sunday against Leeds showed that. It was a striker kind of goal and he made the run in the first place to score. Obviously, he hasn't been used too often in this position in England, but it doesn't mean he can't play it."

Meanwhile, Villas-Boas is considering handing Lewis Holtby a debut at Carrow Road on Wednesday night following his arrival from Schalke, even though he has only had one training session with his new Tottenham team-mates.

"We rate the player very highly and we managed to get him at a good price," added Villas-Boas. "It was always a question how much Schalke wanted for the player. There was a willingness to come early. We had a chance to bring him and we have added him to the squad.

"He is an extremely talented midfield player, used to playing in different positions and is an excellent addition. He has only had one training session, so we will decide wisely if it's appropriate for him to play."

Villas-Boas has confirmed that Defoe will play at Norwich on Wednesday night after he missed Sunday's FA Cup exit, but midfielder Tom Huddlestone will miss the trip to Carrow Road after picking up an injury in training.

He has also opened the door for Jake Livermore to make a move to QPR in this transfer window after confirming his midfielder has been given a chance to make a decision on his own future.

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