Tottenham

Breakthrough: Tottenham chiefs agree deal to sign “amazing” permanent new player for Ange

Tottenham Hotspur have agreed a deal to sign 18-year-old Blackburn Rovers defender Ashley Phillips, according to reports. The North London club have reportedly seen their bid accepted by the Championship side.

What’s the latest on Spurs and Ashley Phillips?

Spurs have seen their £3m bid for Phillips accepted, according to Charlie Eccleshare of The Athletic, with the teenager set to make the step-up to the Premier League after he showed signings of breaking through at Blackburn last season, making eight appearances.

As per Eccleshare, the youngster is set to undergo a medical in the next 24 hours, before joining up with the rest of the Spurs squad for their pre-season tour.

His arrival will also reportedly not get in the way of the Lillywhites’ plans to sign at least one more senior centre-back this summer, with the likes of former loanee Clement Lenglet linked with a permanent move.

Of course, at such a young age, the central defender may well find himself refined to the youth sides, rather than thrown straight into the deep end of Ange Postecoglou’s first-team.

Phillips will become the fourth signing of the Postecoglou era, following in the footsteps of Manor Solomon, Guglielmo Vicario, and James Maddison, as the North London side undergo another rebuild under yet another manager.

Who is Ashley Phillips?

Ashley Phillips for Blackburn Rovers

It’s a fairly impressive move for Phillips at just 18-years-old, but it’s one that he’s earned after impressing for Blackburn last season.

The defender was the subject of plenty of praise throughout the last few years, with former manager Tony Mowbray saying, via the Lancashire Telegraph, back in 2021: “He’s an amazing footballer and he is going to be a mega footballer I’m pretty sure, but he’s a very young boy.

“He’s a 6’3, 6’4 magnificent cut of a guy, fast as lightning, composed with the ball, aggressive. I think this football club have a footballer on their hands, and we have to manage his introduction into our team as best we can. I just brought him to give him some experience.”

Statistically speaking, too, Phillips wasn’t far off the numbers that Japhet Tanganga produced in his limited game-time last season – even making more blocks than the current Spurs man, according to FBref.

The 24-year-old Tanganga is a good example of how Spurs’ academy process can benefit young players, too. Coming through the academy, though injuries have stalled his progress, Tanganga was a consistent fixture in the side at one stage.

For Phillips, it will be a case of taking his chances as and when they come, starting with pre-season. The next few weeks will give him a great chance to learn from some of his teammates ahead of the campaign, and perhaps he can nudge his way in on some of Tanganga’s minutes, or even throw doubt over the need for a signing like Lenglet.

When it comes to competitions such as the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, we may see Phillips thrown into the side by Postecoglou, as we get a glimpse of the player that the teenager has the potential to become

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