Villarreal defender Pau Torres turned down a summer move to Tottenham despite the two clubs agreeing a transfer fee, according to reports. The 24-year-old was targeted by Spurs director Fabio Paratici throughout the window but ultimately remained in Spain after rejecting the idea of a move elsewhere.
Torres was heavily tipped to make the switch to England after an impressive campaign with Villarreal last time around.
He made 44 appearances in all competitions for the La Liga outfit, helping them to clinch the Europa League at the expense of Manchester United in the final.
The Red Devils were believed to be harbouring an interest in Torres over the summer, but they eventually decided to sign long-term target Raphael Varane from Real Madrid instead.
This gave Spurs a free run at his signature, with Paratici also looking to bolster his side’s ranks with the addition of a top-class defender.
However, Torres went on to snub the possibility of joining Spurs in spite of the club’s best efforts, according to AS.
The report claims that Paratici managed to negotiate a £42.7million fee with Villarreal to bring Torres to north London.
Spurs also reached out to the player’s representatives in order to settle on personal terms, but he was in no mood to seal the deal.
Torres reportedly made it clear from the outset that he was determined to stay at Villarreal and play in the Champions League for his hometown club this season.
The defender would have only been tempted by a move to ‘one of the great Europeans’, suggesting that Spurs were always fighting a losing battle in the race to secure his signature.
Real Madrid were also credited with an interest in Torres but decided against making a formal offer, with David Alaba emerging as their chosen candidate upon his arrival from Bayern Munich on a free transfer.
It remains to be seen whether Los Blancos will eventually move for the Villarreal man in January or when next summer rolls around, at which point he will have two years left to run on his current contract.
Torres recently admitted that it was an easy decision to stay at Villarreal, with the Spaniard claiming that he has no regrets over choosing to avoid a big-money departure.
“My idea was to live an exciting season,” he told AS.
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“I was very clear about what I wanted and that was to stay at home and at Villarreal. Therefore, it was a quick decision.
“All decisions are respectable, I wanted to stay. I’m happy with the decision I made, my idea was to stay home and I’m happy about it.”
Torres has already played five times this season after a busy summer in which he represented Spain at Euro 2020 and the Tokyo Olympics.
He is likely to be involved against United in a repeat of last season’s Europa League final on Wednesday evening at Old Trafford.