Tottenham Hotspur are reportedly preparing a bid to sign Mateo Musacchio from Villarreal in the ongoing transfer window.

A report claims that the 23-year-old has emerged as a target for Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino, who wants to strengthen his back four on a priority basis.

The north London club have already agreed a deal with Sporting Lisbon to sign versatile centre-back Eric Dier.

The former Southampton boss is believed to have sent scouts to watch the Argentinean as he impressed for the La Liga outfit last campaign, making 32 appearances.

With the arrival of Dier, Tottenham will have to offload one or two of their current defenders to accommodate Musacchio for the upcoming campaign.

Earlier reports suggested that Musacchio has a release clause of €50m (£40m), which could prove to be the biggest hindrance for Tottenham to sign the player this summer.

Skipper Michael Dawson has reportedly been told to leave and is linked with a move to Hull City, but so far nothing has materialised.

The 30-year-old is currently with the travelling party to Helsinki, where Pochettino's men face Scottish club Celtic on Saturday.

The report also suggests that Tottenham's efforts to acquire Musacchio's services could be complicated due to ownership issues as his former club River Plate retains a percentage of the player's rights.

In December last year, Villarreal president Fernando Roig had revealed that the club would only consider listening to offers if the interested parties were willing to pay the money upfront and if it was a sizeable bid.

"Musacchio's contract runs out in 2018, therefore, he has four years left here. If they come and pay what he's worth, we'll talk. For a player to leave three parties need to be in agreement, not just one or two," Roig told Marca.

"He has a contract. If they want him, and it is acceptable for Villarreal, and those making the offer put money on the table, we'll sit down and talk."