Jordi Alba has emerged as a surprise target for Tottenham Hotspur, with Antonio Conte eyeing a quickfire deal for the Barcelona defender.

According to a report by Italian outlet Calciomercatoweb, Tottenham are readying a move for Barcelona defender Jordi Alba in an attempt to strengthen their squad in January.

Antonio Conte has always looked to add match-winners in his squad rather than players who could form a solid base for the future. There are no doubts about Alba’s quality. But with age, his form has deteriorated, and a move to the Premier League might backfire at this juncture of his career.

However, Conte is willing to take a risk, and a short-term deal might be on the cards in January. With the Tottenham manager opting for a three-man backline, the left channel has been exposed quite a few times. And Conte wants to have an attacking wing-back who can plug the gaps.

Ben Davies has mostly featured as a left-sided centre-back, leaving Conte a big gap in that left wing-back section. Ivan Perisic and Ryan Sessegnon have done decently, but they do not offer much protection defensively, with Conte demanding more from Perisic. However, Alba’s inclusion will strike a perfect balance between defence and attack.

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Barcelona might be more than happy to grant his departure, as the Blaugrana are still in the middle of their financial woes. They need to lower their wage bill to some massive extent and offloading the 33-year-old would be the first step towards safety. Barcelona had also been open to selling Alba in the summer.

Alba has fallen down the pecking order at Barcelona this season, with Xavi Hernandez preferring Marcos Alonso and Alejandro Balde over him this season. Tottenham have maintained their European credentials intact with a hard-fought win over Eintracht Frankfurt in the Champions League. And Conte now wants to step on the gas to finally bring that coveted trophy to North London.

Juventus have also long been monitoring Alba’s situation and could tempt him to make a move to Turin in the winter transfer window. But Tottenham’s emergence might change things, and it will be interesting to see how this story develops in the coming months.

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