Cape Town - Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen was reportedly the subject of a serious offer from Juventus in the off-season, with the Serie A outfit offering Paulo Dybala in an audacious swap deal.
Spurs were believed to be one of the clubs interested in signing Argentina international Dybala, but they were unable to conclude a deal before the Premier League transfer window closed earlier this month.
Juve were believed to be open to the idea of selling Dybala and it is now being claimed that they proposed a swap deal that would have seen the 25-year-old move to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in exchange for Eriksen.
Pochettino rejected that proposal out of hand as he still remained confident that Denmark international Eriksen, who has entered the final 12 months of his current contract, would be willing to sign fresh terms.
However, it is now becoming clear that Eriksen has no plans to put pen to paper on a contract extension and he looks destined to leave Spurs on a free transfer at the end of the season.
Indeed, Eriksen can enter negotiations with clubs from outside of England as early as January and Pochettino may now be regretting his decision to not go with the swap deal, particularly as Juventus are believed to be one of the clubs interested in signing the 27-year-old on a free transfer.
Barcelona and Real Madrid are also said to be keeping tabs on Eriksen, although Tottenham still have a few months, at least, to convince the former Ajax star to change his mind and remain in north London.
The best way for Spurs to do that would be by mounting a serious title challenge and they have made a strong start to the new campaign, following up their opening day win over Aston Villa with a hard-fought 2-2 draw at Manchester City last time out – although they had VAR to thank for holding onto a share of the spoils at the Etihad Stadium.
If Tottenham cannot convince Eriksen to stay then they will have to turn their attention to finding a replacement and they could, therefore, renew their interest in signing Dybala.
The potential departure of Eriksen would certainly leave a big hole in the Spurs midfield as he has scored 49 goals and provided 60 assists in his 208 Premier League appearances for the club since making his debut in 2013.