Chelsea made inquiries into the possibility of signing Djed Spence earlier this summer, according to The Athletic.
The report claims that the Stamford Bridge outfit had mulled over whether to bring in the England Under-21 international as a possible back-up to Reece James, but did not firm up their original interest.
Tottenham secured the services of the right wing-back from Middlesbrough last week in a deal worth an intial £12.5m with another £7.5m in potential future add-ons (Alasdair Gold).
Spence spent last season on loan at Nottingham Forest, where he helped to make made a name for himself last season with Steve Cooper’s side having also been keen to secure his services on a permanent basis.
The 21-year-old made his first appearance for Tottenham earlier today when he came on as a second half substitute in the 2-1 win against Rangers in Glasgow and made an important challenge in his own penalty area to deny the Scottish side a chance on goal.
Fortunately for us, we saw off any sign of interest from our rivals to get our hands on Spence in the end. He is a highly talented prospect who made his breakthrough in the Championship last campaign. However, his performances in the FA Cup also indicate how he is ready to face off against top opposition as well.
By signing Spence, we have essentially strengthened our squad and prevented our direct rivals from bolstering their team in the process. Moreover, the Englishman is a necessity to an extent as well, considering how Emerson Royal is in line to leave after just one season with us.
The West Londoners made enquires for Spence but never strengthened their interest in the 21-year-old. That helped us a lot in this pursuit, as we were afforded enough time to reach an agreement with Boro. One may wonder how this would have panned out if there were heavy competition for his services.
Spence’s efforts must also be given recognition, as he had firmly made up his mind to join us. In fact, he was so sure of moving to N17 that he even told his Forest teammates that he would sign for Tottenham. A move in January was on the cards, but the complexities involved pushed it to this summer in the end.
Spence’s eagerness to join us would give assurances that he would do his best to fight for his spot in Antonio Conte’s system. With Matt Doherty being his competition, we could see both of them pushing each other to do their best in the upcoming season.