Manchester United will make signing Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld their number one priority during the January transfer window, reports The Sun.

The Belgium international was close to leaving Spurs for Old Trafford in the summer after failing to agree terms on a new contract.

However, Alderweireld stayed with Tottenham and has played a key part in helping Mauricio Pochettino’s side battle at home and in Europe.

Although Spurs could trigger a one-year extension to his current deal which expires next summer, that will activate a clause which will make him available for £25 million during the final two weeks of the January transfer window.

United boss Mourinho is a known admirer of the Tottenham centre-back and reportedly wanted to sign him during the summer.

He did not get his man then but will now make a move for the Spurs player once the January transfer window opens.

The Red Devils have conceded 26 goals in the Premier League this season – 10 more than Tottenham – and Mourinho needs to shore up his backline.

The report claims that the Portuguese will be given funds to sign Alderweireld in January and they also reported earlier in the week that United refused to sign him for £30 million in the summer.

Now, The Sun claims that Mourinho is ready to splash out around £40 million to sign the Belgian.

And the paper believes Spurs boss Pochettino could eventually follow Alderweireld to Old Trafford with United bosses unhappy with the current situation.

If losing one of their key defenders wasn’t bad enough, that would arguably be an even bigger blow for Tottenham fans.

Juan Foyth’s emergence this season as a genuine first-team option may mean that Spurs fans won’t be too disheartened if Alderweireld does depart.

However, Pochettino would likely want to bring in extra cover should the deal go through and will already have his eye on a number of potential targets.

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