Tottenham Hotspur will be on the look out for a new striker in the summer after they have decided against taking up the £36m option to sign Carlos Vinicius permanently.
The 26-year-old has failed to make any real impression since arriving on a season-long loan from Benfica last year, although he has been faced with the impossible task of adequately covering for the talismanic Harry Kane.
Vinicius' lack of goals has left Spurs unconvinced that he can be a suitable back-up to Kane next year, and they have now come to a decision over his future.
Sky Sports News reports that the north London club has decided not to exercise the £36m option-to-buy clause in his loan deal, and will instead send the striker back to Benfica in the summer.
The former Napoli man has scored only one league goal in nine appearances this campaign, although he starred in the Europa League and FA Cup, bagging a combined nine goals in 12 games over the two competitions.
However, he has struggled to adapt to the demands of the Premier League, and Spurs are not willing to splash a significant chunk of their transfer budget on a risky back-up option. That means Tottenham are once again on the hunt for the perfect second-choice striker to support Kane, whose injury issues have left the team short of goals on several occasions this season.
This area remains a priority for the club to strengthen in the summer, and their transfer plans have not changed following the sacking of former coach Jose Mourinho. Another major concern for Spurs will be making sure they do not need to go in search of a first-choice striker this summer, with Kane considering his future amid another trophy-less season.
The England captain will attract plenty of attention from Europe's top clubs, and Spurs will have to convince him of their project in order to keep him in north London.
Source : 90min