Jan Vertonghen: Door is open for Tottenham contract renewal, says agent
"There is a lot of interest for Jan, certainly on a free transfer, but Tottenham also remain an interesting option for us," says agent Tom De Mul
By Tommaso Fiore
Last Updated: 07/02/20 12:24pm
Jan Vertonghen's future at Tottenham is undecided, but the defender's agent insists that "the door is still open" for a contract renewal.
The 32-year-old, who will be able to leave on a free transfer when his contract expires in the summer, was subbed off by head coach Jose Mourinho nine minutes into the second half of their FA Cup fourth-round replay win over Southampton on Wednesday.
Vertonghen looked visibly upset as he left the pitch to make way for Gedson Fernandes, but according to the player's agent Tom De Mul, his reaction is not an indication that his longer-term future lies away from north London, where he is "super happy".
"At the moment, we have no agreement, but we're not ruling anything out," De Mul told Het Laatste Nieuws. "We're open to everything.
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"There is a lot of interest for Jan, certainly on a free transfer, but Tottenham also remain an interesting option for us. The door is still open.
"He is still very happy with Tottenham and feels great in London. Jan has developed his life there, and it is out of the question that he will not let it go.
"He has a lot of respect for Tottenham, and on the other hand Tottenham have a lot of respect for us. That makes sense after almost eight years together, there is a strong bond."
Lucas Moura and Heung-Min Son's late goals ensured Spurs went on to win the FA Cup tie 3-2 and set up a fifth-round clash against Norwich on March 4.
However, De Mul said Vertonghen's emotional reaction was down to his quest for trophies, suggesting that the Belgian's playing time ahead of Euro 2020 in the summer might have also been a factor.
"When he was subbed off, Jan was just disappointed about his and the team's performance. It is difficult for Jan to hide that, but that's just the way he is.
"He still wants to get good results with Spurs after a difficult start, he wants to qualify for the Europa League or Champions League, or in this case win the FA Cup. He is 32, but he is still so ambitious. He still has so many targets.
"Euro 2020 is, for example, a super priority. He wants to play at the highest level in a top competition for as long as possible. He is still very hungry."
Vertonghen, who joined Spurs in 2012 from Ajax, has made 26 appearances in all competitions this season, 13 of them coming under new boss Mourinho.
The Portuguese insisted he did not need to speak with his defender as he would be able to understand that his substitution was a tactical decision.
"It's normal that he's sad. No player likes to come out," said Mourinho after the game on Wednesday.
"I decided to sacrifice Jan, so sad yes and with a reason to be sad, but happy now because he won.
"I don't need to speak to him because he's an intelligent guy. He's very professional and it's obvious that I did it not to punish because he was playing exactly the same as the others."