Tottenham have repeatedly been linked with Andrea Ranocchia over the past week, almost entirely due to Jan Vertonghen’s injury, and then further encouraged by Toby Alderweireld going off against Manchester City.

Tottenham have some depth in the central defensive positions but potential worry about the quality of that depth have prompted the claims.

However, Ranocchia moving to Tottenham in January seemed rash and not the type of move Mauricio Pochettino would make. There’s a reason Inter Milan are keen to sell and it’s got to be considered unlikely Pochettino would consider the player, who turns 29 years of age next month, as an option for Tottenham.

Another more believable Italian report is that Tottenham are one of a number of clubs to ‘request information’ about signing Stefan De Vrij from Lazio, as reported by La Repubblica. The 24 year old’s contract ends in June 2018 and so far renewal attempts have been futile.

De Vrij is a good age for Pochettino and would provide quality in the centre of defence, as far as back-up plans go. The Dutch international would have to accept a back-up role, but may be willing to do that for a club challenging for the Premier League title.

A summer attempt is the likelier scenario, if Tottenham are genuinely interested, and by then De Vrij would only have a year of contract left, which would provide Daniel Levy with an opportunity to drive the price down.