Transfer news: Tottenham target Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez as replacement for Jermain Defoe

The England striker is growing frustrated with the lack of playing time this season

Tottenham must first find a replacement if Jermain Defoe is to leave the club in January - with Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez their top target.

Defoe is desperate for more playing time with the World Cup in the horizon, and has been strongly linked with a switch away. MLS side Toronto FC and West Ham and QPR have all been cited as possible destinations for the 31-year-old.

However, according to the Evening Standard, Andre Villas-Boas is wary of reducing his options up front.

Defoe is the club’s top scorer this season with nine goals and has significantly started the last two League matches, while £26m summer signing Roberto Soldado has been named on the bench.

Soldado, who has scored just four League goals this term (three of which were penalties), has struggled to adapt to the team’s style of play and the pace of English football.

Spurs have made buying a forward one of their main priorities in the January transfer window and remain optimistic they can lure Hernandez from Manchester United.

Javier Hernandez Javier Hernandez  

But Villas-Boas wants Defoe to stay at White Hart Lane regardless, although the forward is wary of playing enough first team football to cement his place in England’s World Cup squad next summer.

Tottenham would prefer to off-load Emmanuel Adebyaor, who has made just one appearance as a substitute this term, but he remains happy to stay despite his lack of playing time and clubs have been scared off by his £170,000-a-week salary demands in the past.

The former Manchester City forward is expected to return to training this week following a knee problem and could be in line to feature against Anzhi Makhachkala in the Europa League on Thursday night.

There is also a strong possibility that left back Danny Rose will also be making his first appearance since suffering a toe injury against Tromso in the competition three months ago.

Rose’s return is timely with Jan Vertonghen set to miss the next four weeks after suffering an ankle ligament strain against Fulham.

Spurs are also without Vlad Chiriches due to a knee injury and Younes Kaboul has a problem with his quad, meaning Michael Dawson is currently the only fully fit centre half.

Villas-Boas has also been considering signing a left back in January having been forced to play Vertonghen out of position there during Rose’s absence, but the latter’s return to fitness will ensure they are covered during the busy festive period.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her in Latakia
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report