Tottenham Hotspur continue to explore the possibility of signing David Villa from Barcelona to lead their forward line, with further talks expected to take place between the club's new technical director, Franco Baldini, and the Spain international's representatives following the conclusion of the Confederations Cup.
Villa, at 31, would not represent a conventional Spurs signing under Daniel Levy's chairmanship given the lack of potential sell-on value at that age and his injury problems over the past few seasons. A badly broken leg ruled the forward out of the entire 2011-12 campaign and, although he returned to score 16 goals last term and regain his place in the national side, he has become rather peripheral at Camp Nou with the arrival of the Brazilian Neymar this summer further thrusting him out of the limelight.
The Spurs manager, André Villas-Boas, has been a long-standing admirer of Villa and attempted to sign him for Chelsea during his ill-fated 256-day tenure at Stamford Bridge.
In May the Portuguese described the forward as "a world-renowned striker" and Villa's signing would certainly serve as a statement of intent given Tottenham's narrow failure to qualify for the Champions League last season.
However, although there appears to be scope to agree personal terms with a player who earns around £140,000 a week in Spain, it remains to be seen whether Barcelona drop their initial £12m asking price for a striker whose contract expires in 12 months' time.
Talks will continue on both fronts while Villa prepares for Sunday's Confederations Cup final against Brazil in Rio's Maracanã, and are likely to continue into next week on the basis that a deal can eventually be agreed.
Villas-Boas would ideally like to secure two forwards this summer, while also retaining Gareth Bale, and retains interest in Leandro Damião at Internacional and Valencia's Roberto Soldado.
Tottenham will listen to offers for Emmanuel Adebayor as they seek to revamp their attacking lineup for a renewed challenge next season.
Spurs are also confident that Real Madrid's belatedly expressed interest in the Brazil midfielder Paulinho will not scupper their attempts to sign the player from Corinthians for a fee of around £17m.
Further talks will take place between the clubs next week, with the 24-year-old having publicly expressed his desire to move to London.
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