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Tottenham's Toby Alderweireld denies Man United summer move was close

Steve Nicol examines the gap in quality between Toby Alderweireld and Man United's defence, and whether United can ever land the Spurs centre-back.

Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld said he was not interested in leaving the club this summer amid reports he was set to join Manchester United.

Sources told ESPN FC that United made a £50 million bid for Alderweireld, £20m less than Tottenham wanted, and negotiations over the Belgium international continued until the Premier League transfer deadline on Aug. 9.

"Everyone was saying everywhere that I absolutely wanted to leave Tottenham," Alderweireld said at a news conference ahead of Belgium's UEFA Nations League game against Iceland on Tuesday.

"That's not true. This summer, I quickly understood Tottenham wanted to keep me. So, I had to battle to get my place back in the team. To be in the first team again is a victory for me."

Alderweireld has yet to agree the terms of a new contract with Tottenham, and his current deal, which expires after the 2019-20 season, includes a clause that will allow him to leave for £25m next summer.

He made only 14 appearances in the Premier League last season -- zero between October and April -- but he has started Tottenham's last three games after missing the season opener against Newcastle United.

"I just try to help Tottenham as best I can with my qualities," Alderweireld said. "Regarding my future, everything that was said in the press was not right all the time."

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