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REAL MADRID

Tottenham Hotspur put price on the head of Harry Kane

Real Madrid spoke to the Premier League club before Christmas about their English striker as the two prepare the ground for negotiations.

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane is the new number nine that Real Madrid want to bring in for next season. He will turn 26 at the end of July and the reports conclude that based on age and performance he would be the best striker to sign, compared with established but overly-seasoned goalscorers such as Lewandowski (30) and Cavani (32 next month). And as AS have discovered, Madrid have made direct contact with the London club to make this dream a reality.

Kane: Spurs white to Madrid white?

As we have found out, a senior executive at Real Madrid consulted with Tottenham before the Christmas break. His objective was to get an idea of the transfer price that would potentially be on the table to begin the negotiations in the coming months. The answer was not encouraging, aiming to dissuade any move from the Spanish giants, at 350 million euros. In the transfer market madness that began with Neymar's 222-million-euro move to PSG from Barça, this valuation reflects Madrid's need for a goalscorer to replace the void left by Cristiano Ronaldo, the man who provided 50 goals a season before moving on to Juventus.

Talisman in white | Harry Kane of Tottenham Hotspur.

Spurs' Daniel Levy is well-known for being a tough negotiator (Real Madrid can attest to that personally after the operations to bring in Modric and Bale, and have very recently been thrown a 250-million-euro price-tag on Eriksen) and he has been ready for advances on his current star man. He knows the anguish that has filled the Santiago Bernabéu since their Portuguese hero departed and has laid out a figure for Kane that will determine whether or not the reigning European Champions will sign a perceived solution at any price this summer.

Sliding Bernabéu doors

As we have found out from the club, Madrid want to wait to see how this current season plays out before making any huge decisions. Winning a trophy, or ending the campaign with nothing, often drives very contrasting behaviours in the boardroom. Likewise, Tottenham are in no hurry to sell. In March (assuming no further delays) Kane will be part of the inauguration of the new stadium, and is seen as a key member to the continued success of the project under manager Mauricio Pochettino.