There’s little doubt that Serge Aurier looks every inch a Tottenham Hotspur player; a direct and aggressive attacking right-back with superb technical ability and plenty of time for improvement at the age of just 24.
In fact, the unsavoury off-field issues that have dominated the headlines in recent years somewhat unfairly distract from the fact that Aurier is one of the world’s most talented young full-backs.
And it looked as if Spurs would get a perfect replacement, or perhaps even an upgrade, on the departed Kyle Walker when Sky Sports reported on Sunday that they had agreed a £23 million deal to bring the Ivory Coast international to North London from Paris Saint-Germain.
However, with just three days remaining of a frustrating transfer window, it appears that Spurs’ deal may have taken an unwelcome late twist.
Because The Mirror reports that Aurier would prefer to join a Premier League title rival, Manchester United, instead. Jose Mourinho’s side were linked earlier in the transfer window but, with Antonio Valencia maintaining his fine form from last season in the opening weeks of this, the trail has grown cold.
However, it remains to be seen whether United, who are five points clear of Spurs with just three games gone, will renew their interest with Aurier seemingly angling for a move to Old Trafford.
And this would come as a major blow to Spurs, though this latest revelation does not necessarily mean Aurier will not be plying his trade under Mauricio Pochettino next season.
Despite Spurs finishing above United in each of the last four seasons, it appears that the North Londoners still have some way to go before they can rival the stature and pulling power of the Old Trafford giants.