Toby Alderweireld the Belgian international who spent last season in the Premier League on loan with Southampton and had been linked with a permanent move to St Mary’s, has signed a five-year deal to move to White Hart Lane.
Alderweireld played 26 times for the Saints in 2014-15 and was part of a team that proved second hardest to score against in the top division – they conceded only 33 goals, one more than champions Chelsea.
He joins fellow Belgians Nacer Chadli, Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen at Tottenham, and could end up partnering the latter in the heart of their defence, as they also did when they played as team-mates at Ajax.
Southampton had threatened legal action if Alderweireld joined Spurs, claiming they had a deal in place to sign him as part of their loan deal – Atletico were able to buy out that transfer clause for £1.5m but Saints boss Ronald Koeman said they failed to do so in time.
Alderweireld said: “I’m very proud to become a Spurs player. I’m very happy to be here and I hope to have a wonderful time with this team.
“From the beginning, I knew a lot about it (the club) from Jan Vertonghen, Mousa Dembele and Nacer Chadli.
“It’s a big club and it’s always been a dream to play at a club like Spurs. Now that dream is coming true so I’m very happy, very proud and I will give my best.
“I know the players from the national team and I played with Jan at Ajax, we had a central defensive partnership. It’s nice when you join another club that you know a couple of players. I hope to get to know them a little better now.”