Will Spurs defender's mooted Serie A swap leave the club stronger or weaker?

Vlad Chiriches

With contrasting rumours swirling about the future of Tottenham's Romanian defender, we ask whether the man lined up to replace him is an improvement.

Mauricio Pochettino's feet are barely under the table at White Hart Lane, and possible transfers and possible departures are already being thrown around at an alarming rate.

Despite the transfer window not even opening for another month, yesterday saw reports linking Romanian captain Vlad Chiriches with a move away from Tottenham, with Serie A the destination in a proposed swap deal with Fiorentina's Stefan Savic.

Remember Savic? He was the young Montenegrin centre back brought to Manchester City in 2011, who sadly struggled to really settle in the fast-paced, relentless Premier League. A series of nervy performances saw him shipped out of the club after just one season, heading to Fiorentina in exchange for the younger and more impressive Matija Nastasic.

Though Savic has managed to rebuild his career in Serie A, making 57 appearances as the Florence side finished 4th two seasons in a row, the 23-year-old's previous time in England did little to convince he is a more promising prospect than Chiriches.

The Romanian showed flashes of an ability to turn into a quick and skilful centre back at times last season, though any substantial run of form was interrupted by back and nose injuries, as well as Tottenham's general dire defending. A spell under Pochettino's coaching may well be the making of  him as a Premier League defender, if he was to stay.

There is some uncertainty about the root of the rumours, with apparent representative Florin Manea telling sport.ru: "Did you see how little he played? I believe he will not remain in England.

"I think he will go to Fiorentina. Tottenham? I understand they're interested in Savic.

"For my client, however, it is better to Italian football than English."

However a second representative, Pietro Chiodi, rubbished the claims, telling calciomercato.it: "Someone has spoken about the future of Chiriches, but I am the only real agent of Vlad. I categorically deny that Fiorentina are interested in my client."

Quite where that means Chiriches or Savic will end up, no-one knows, but many Spurs fans may be wandering whether the former City defender is in fact an upgrade on their current defender, regardless of which rep is telling the truth.

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