Ten days ago, the Croatian and English press was awash with news that Tottenham had landed two very highly rated Croat youth players in Alen Halilovic and Tin Jedvaj. Today, a report claims that the €20m deal for both players has collapsed, and that both players will remain – for now – with their current club Dinamo Zagreb.
101greatgoals.com is reporting that the deal for Halilovic fell through after Spurs failed to agree terms with Hailiovic's family.
According to reports in Italy, Halilovic's family were after a wage of 1.2 million euros a year plus a house for his family to live in and school fees for his two brothers.
Tottenham only proposed 800,000 euros a season and a house, so Halilovic's family pulled the plug on the deal.
The deal with Halilovic, believed to be for the majority of the payment, broke down yesterday.
The article goes on to suggest that if Halilovic falls through, Jedvaj will likewise stay in Croatia.
If true, this is a very disappointing development. Halilovic is considered the best youth player to come out of Croatia since, well, Luka Modric. He might even be better. He's a superstar in the making, and Spurs should consider it a coup to land him. Jedvaj is no slouch either -- a talented central defender who with a few years of seasoning could make the Spurs first 11.
However, there's a great deal of skepticism about these reports. Croatian sports journalist Aleksandr Holiga noted on Twitter that this was not reported in the Croatian media:
Interesting, the version that Halilović deal failed due to Spurs failing to agree terms with family wasn't reported in Croatia at all.— Aleksandar Holiga (@AlexHoliga) July 10, 2013
I'm not taking those reports for granted - just wonder if they're true or not. They certainly could be.— Aleksandar Holiga (@AlexHoliga) July 10, 2013
Which would put another twist on the story how 'family declined big money, wanted only what's best for Alen'...— Aleksandar Holiga (@AlexHoliga) July 10, 2013
Holiga was one of the first to report on the original deal, and he's pretty trustworthy when it comes to Croatian football and players. And while it's not out of the realm of possibility that 101greatgoals.com got an incredible scoop, they're not exactly what you would call the most trustworthy of sources for these matters. So wait until you see it reported in The Guardian or BBC before you push the panic button. It would really suck to lose these guys, though. These are the kinds of young players Spurs should be signing. They're the future of Tottenham Hotspur.
UPDATE: Croatian newspaper Sportske novosti is reporting that the deal is definitively off. It's also reporting that Roma has made an improved bid for Tin Jedvaj. Links to the article in question aren't resolving right now, but we've managed to find a cached version of the report.