Tottenham and Chelsea are locked in a complex transfer battle involving Olivier Giroud and Dries Mertens.
France striker Giroud wants out of Stamford Bridge and had agreed terms on a move to Inter Milan until the Italians got cold feet.
That has alerted Spurs, who are struggling to sign cover for Harry Kane and think the 33-year-old could be the answer to their prayers.
Giroud is open to the move but fears Chelsea will block it as they may not want to strengthen a direct rival for a Champions League spot.
Sources close to the Blues insist they could be prepared to do business – but that Spurs would have to pay more than the £4.5m they were offered by Inter for Giroud.
To complicate matters, Inter gave up on signing Giroud this month to target Napoli striker Mertens instead.
But Chelsea have also made an enquiry about the Belgium star and are reluctant to let Giroud go anywhere without signing a striker of their own.
That leaves the former Arsenal man in limbo. Giroud is out of contract in the summer, with Inter still interested in bringing him in then.
But he needs games ahead of Euro 2020 and has told Chelsea he wants to leave, with Michy Batshuayi and Tammy Abraham, when he returns from injury, ahead of him at the Bridge.
Olivier Giroud is wanted by Inter Milan and Tottenham
(Image: Getty Images)
Giroud has started only two league games for Blues boss Frank Lampard this season and hasn’t made the squad since the start of December.
Spurs firmed up their interest when his move to Inter hit the skids because they fear missing out on their other targets.
They made a loan offer for AC Milan misfit Krzysztof Piatek but the Serie A side, who turned down a bid from Hertha Berlin on Wednesday, want a permanent sale.
Giroud could bid farewell to Chelsea in the next few days
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