Forget Toby Alderweireld. Daniel Levy has a far bigger contract dilemma that could cost Tottenham more than £100million.
Way more, in fact, as the Spurs chairman and chief contract negotiator would value Christian Eriksen at around the £142million fee Barcelona paid Liverpool for Philippe Coutinho in January.
They are similar players, and Eriksen’s influence at Tottenham and in the Premier League as a world-class operator at the peak of his powers is almost beyond question.
The problem for the Londoners is that the great Dane is out of contract in the summer of 2020 and moves to tie him to an extension have failed.
At least, that is according to Mundo Deportivo, who claim Spurs have offered Eriksen a “succulent” contract worth almost as much as the £200,000-a-week, six-year contract signed by Harry Kane in June.
The Spanish newspaper claim the playmaker, 26, has failed to accept the offer on the table at a time when Real Madrid are showing sustained interest and are keen to make him their long-term replacement for Luka Modric.
The Champions League holders paid Spurs £30million for Modric six years ago, but it would cost more than three times that for Eriksen in January, even with 18 months left on his contract.
Were Eriksen to pen a five-year deal, Tottenham would be comfortable in the knowledge they had a £140million-plus asset at the club.
Were he to snub the contract on the table until the end of the season and enter the final 12 months of his current deal, the Londoners would be in a precarious position.
They would face the prospect of losing him as a free agent in 2020, or selling him for a reduced fee next summer.
Compared to the Alderweireld contract stalemate, this is an epic headache for Levy and company.