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Sources: Tottenham planning Ings bid

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AVB: Early Holtby signing 'difficult'

Tottenham are still attempting to bring forward the transfer of Lewis Holtby from the summer to the January window, with manager Andre Villas-Boas refusing to rule the "difficult" possibility out.

Lewis Holtby could be dropped against Arsenal
Midfielder Holtby has shone for Schalke

The Londoners have agreed to sign Schalke midfielder Holtby in the summer but, with Sandro out for the season after suffering ligament damage against QPR, could do with reinforcements.

Schalke general manager Horst Held said this week that Holtby could leave during the current transfer window.

However, Villas-Boas said bringing the move forward would be tough and that, in the event it is not agreed, he would be “unlikely” to bring in any other players.

Instead, he said Scott Parker’s return from injury had eased the situation, adding that Spurs were also reconsidering whether to allow Jake Livermore to go out on loan.

Villas-Boas said he did not think Holtby would be able to make an early arrival at White Hart Lane, adding: “At the moment, it’s very, very difficult, but let’s see.”

He described the prospect of other signings as“not impossible but unlikely”, adding: “At the moment, there is nothing [lined up]. It’s very difficult.

“The only thing we have done at the moment is hold onto the midfielders that are here.

“As you understand, Scotty [Parker] was out at the beginning of the season - he will be a major boost for us in midfield. The [FA Cup] game against Coventry, Jake [Livermore] was always there threatening so we’re fine.

“It is not unlikely [that Livermore will go out on loan], but we have to be careful. We still have a couple of weeks before the window closes, so we just have to be careful with the decision and see how we go, the next couple of games.”

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