By Editor Wayne Veysey | Former Evening Standard, Press Association and Goal chief correspondent with 17 years experience of breaking big stories, including exclusives like this
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Tottenham’s pursuit of Mousa Dembele took a new twist on Thursday as it emerged that Fulham have requested a Spurs player in part-exchange, Football Insider sources understand.
Discussions have taken place between the London clubs in the last 24 hours about a deal in which Dembele could move to White Hart Lane for a multi-million pound fee.
Fulham are adamant the 19-year-old striker will not leave Craven Cottage this month unless they secure a replacement.
However, the Championship club are under a transfer embargo this month and can only recruit players on loan rather than permanent deals.
A source close to the situation has told Football Insider that Fulham want a Spurs player and among the names that have been mentioned are playmaker Alex Pritchard and midfielder Harry Winks.
Pritchard, who had a successful loan spell at Brentford last season, has just returned to training after three months out with an ankle injury, while Winks has attracted lots of interest from Championship clubs.
Fulham are keen to secure an agreement for Dembele to join a Premier League club as he is out of contract at the end of the season and can move overseas for a small compensation fee of £300,000.
But they want the Frenchman to remain at Craven Cottage and lead the club’s relegation battle and then move on in the summer when his contract expires.
Dembele also has strong interest from Manchester United, but could secure a better deal from a Continental club, with Juventus and Monaco leading the chase.
Fulham are 19th in the table and just four points above the drop zone, with a young team reliant for goals from 17-goal top scorer McCormack and 11-goal Dembele.
Fulham have rejected a £10million bid from Middlesbrough for McCormack, who was absent from the team’s 1-0 defeat to Hull last Saturday.
It emerged on Thursday that the Cottagers have rejected a transfer request from McCormack, who signed a new contract last August.
In other Tottenham transfer news, Mauricio Pochettino has still not given up hope of enticing Saido Berahino from West Brom.