Hamburg have confirmed media reports linking the Bundesliga side with Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Lewis Holtby.
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Holtby, 23, could return to the Bundesliga less than two years after he left for the Premier League. In January 2013, the Germany international completed his dream transfer to England, the birthplace of his father, where he joined Tottenham.
Hamburg CEO Dietmar Beiersdorfer has confirmed the club's interest in signing the former Schalke midfielder, who has failed to hold down a first-team place at White Hart Lane and spent the end of last season on loan at Fulham.
According to a report in Hamburger Abendblatt, HSV initially held talks with Holtby a few weeks ago, and on Tuesday, Beiersdorfer confirmed the interest in the midfielder, who has four years left on his contract at Spurs.
"I would be lying if I said that we have nothing to do with Holtby," Beiersdorfer said during a fan meeting in quotes reported by Abendblatt. "We need to allow for all possibilities.
"Holtby is a good young and German player, who does not win a lot of minutes at Tottenham."
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There had been speculation in Hamburg that Holtby could replace ageing captain Rafael van der Vaart, who has been linked with a switch to Trabzonspor in Turkish media on Tuesday.
But Beiersdorfer ruled out selling the former Spurs midfielder, who has entered the final year of his Hamburg contract, during the summer transfer window.
"I bank on Rafael. He's in good shape," Beiersdorfer said. "I am delighted that he's one of ours. Rafa is an outstanding player. He enters the new season full of motivation. He is proud to be the captain."
In an interview with Sport Bild, the Netherlands midfielder also insisted that he has no plans to leave Hamburg.
"I have always said that I want to continue to play for HSV, and nothing has changed," he said.