By Azeem Siddiqui

17th Jul, 2022 | 3:10pm

Everton in four-way battle to sign Spurs defender Japhet Tanganga

Everton are one of the four clubs interested in signing Tottenham Hotspur defender Japhet Tanganga this summer, according to La Gazzetta dello Sport.

The Italian newspaper reported via their print edition on Sunday (17 July, page three) that the ex-England U21 international has three years left on his deal with Spurs but is believed to be keen on leaving the club due to a lack of minutes under manager Antonio Conte.

The report suggests that the Toffees are facing competition from the likes of reigning Italian champions AC Milan, Spanish outfit Valencia and Premier League rivals Brentford for the signature of the 23-year-old.

The Merseyside club have been rather slow in the transfer market thus far where they have only signed veteran centre-back James Tarkowski on a free.

Versatile Defender

Ever since getting promoted to the first team by Jose Mourinho in 2019, Tanganga has undoubtedly been one of the fan favourites at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Mourinho has always believed that the youngster has had a huge ceiling and can play in multiple positions.

Tanganga prefers to play as a right-back but can also occupy the defensive midfield position and the centre-back role.

However, we cannot actually determine what the future is going to be like for the 23-year-old when he isn’t playing much.

In the 2021-22 season, the former England U21 international only made 11 Premier League appearances.

Despite the lack of minutes, he averaged 1.3 tackles, 0.8 interceptions, and 2.7 clearances per game in the Premier League and had a rating of 6.52, according to Whoscored.

Everton had a lot of problems at the back last season as they finished with the fifth-worst defensive record in the Premier League and conceded 66 goals.

Therefore, it is important that their bolster their backline and a young player like Tanganga with a decent amount of Premier League experience might prove to be a step in the right direction.