Gareth Bale is sitting out 'injured' at the moment. But the man targeted as his future replacement will be doing no such thing.
Tomorrow will see Tottenham Hotspur face off against Swansea City in the second Premier League game of the season, and both teams come into the game on the back of emphatic Europa League victories in midweek.
But Spurs will again be without Gareth Bale. The Welshman is ‘injured’ and will once again not be available for the team.
In fact, Tottenham boss Andre Villas-Boas has confirmed that the player will not be in attendance at White Hart Lane on Sunday. It comes as Real Madrid begin assembling a stage in the Bernabeu Stadium - generally believed to be in anticipation of the Welshman’s imminent arrival in the Spanish capital, for what could be a world record fee.
However, while Bale will be nowhere near the Spurs team for their next game, the player earmarked as his replacement this weekend has been named in his current teams squad for their respective game this Sunday.
It is reported in Italian press this weekend that Tottenham have agreed a fee for Argentine international playmaker Erik Lamela - believed to be in the region of £25.8 million.
The AS Roma players representatives have been in Madrid negotiating a move with Spurs officials - who were in the Spanish capital for, well, obvious reasons.
But while reports of a Monday move for Lamela are doing the rounds in Italy, the fact remains he will not be doing a Bale this weekend.
Lamela has been named in Rudi Garcia’s squad for their opening game of the Serie A season against Livorno.
Whether it means a deal is not as imminent as first reported this weekend remains to be seen - but it is certainly not a good sign for Spurs regardless.
As if a deal was close you can imagine Roma would not risk injuring the 21-year-old, and if he does get injured with this scenario - Spurs will not be best pleased.
Are you wary of Lamela playing against Livorno?
image: © Jan S0L0