Everton could trump Tottenham for Schalke winger Lewis Holtby.

The Sunday Express says the midfield playmaker has signed a pre-contract agreement to join Spurs on a free transfer when his deal with the Bundesliga club expires at the end of the season. But Schalke would like some money for Holtby and are prepared to let him go this month - if the price is right.

That means Everton could steal the player from under Spurs' noses in a cut-price deal, especially as the player and his Merseyside-born dad are both lifelong Everton fans.

A Spurs spokesman said: "He has signed an agreement to join us in the summer and that's that. We don't know what the Schalke people's agenda is on this."