Tottenham Hotspur were keen to sign striker Ollie Watkins from Brentford but were priced out of a move for the new Aston Villa forward, according to The Athletic.

Spurs are in dire need of a new centre forward and manager Jose Mourinho has admitted ahead of the new season starting this weekend that the club are searching for a back-up or competition for Harry Kane.

The latest report suggests that Tottenham were very keen on Watkins, whose freescoring form was impressive in the Championship last season, but were unable or unwilling to match the £28 million paid by Villa to land the attacker’s signature.

Spurs are reliant on Kane in the final third and have struggled at times when the homegrown hero has been unavailable through injury, with the likes of Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura able to play as the furthest man forward, but better in supporting roles.

The likes of Roberto Soldado, Vincent Janssen and Fernando Llorente have not had the desired impact at Tottenham, while rising star Troy Parrott has correctly been farmed out on loan to Millwall.

Spurs still have time before the close of the transfer window to sign a striker but it appears that significant expenditure is need for the club to sign a new attacker of any quality.