Tottenham are battling to land Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente.

The Guardian says Spurs face an uphill task if they are to sign the Spain forward Llorente from Athletic Bilbao, with his club unwilling to accept an offer that does not trigger the €36m (£31.6m) buy-out clause in his contract.

The Spurs manager Harry Redknapp is anxious to reinforce his attacking options after seeing Peter Crouch, Jermain Defoe, Robbie Keane and Roman Pavlyuchenko register just 18 league goals between them for the club last season.

Llorente, who scored 19 goals in 2010-11 to help propel Athletic into a sixth-place finish and the Europa League, has been a long-time target for Spurs, whose interest was intensified once Mirko Vucinic moved from Roma to Juventus last month. Preliminary talks took place with Bilbao last weekend, although the Basque club said they would be reluctant sellers of their most prized asset.

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