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Schalke stand firm on Spurs-bound Holtby

SoccerNews in English Premier League 24 Jan 2013

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Schalke have rejected a fresh bid from Tottenham for midfielder Lewis Holtby, the German club’s general manager Horst Heldt has claimed.

The north London club already have an agreement in place to take the 22-year-old to White Hart Lane upon the expiry of his contract in the off-season, but have moved to purchase Holtby in January after Sandro suffered a season-ending knee injury.

However, Spurs will have to up their offer if they are to succeed in their pursuit of the young midfielder, according to Heldt.

“Spurs have increased their offer for Holtby, but only slightly. But it is still not acceptable. We have to wait,” he told reporters.

Heldt also responded to questions over the potential transfer of Lyon’s Brazilian fullback Michael Bastos.

“There’s nothing new to add on Holtby or Michel Bastos. We haven’t opened talks with Lyon yet.

“Tottenham have only marginally improved their offer for Holtby, but it remains unacceptable for us. We will have to wait to see what happens.

“Feasibility is what it’s all about, not wishes.”

Schalke coach Jens Keller had stated he would like to keep the young star until the end of the season, but suggested a transfer fee could be beneficial to the club considering Holtby is definitely leaving at the end of the season.

“Lewis put in a great performance against Hannover. It would be good if he stayed here. But we have to take the financial side into account as well,” Keller told reporters.

Holtby’s move to White Hart Lane will see him leave Germany for the first time after spells with Alemannia Aachen, Bochum and Mainz before moving to Schalke in 2009.

The Germany Under-21 captain has played 78 times for the Bundesliga side, and scored 13 goals.

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