Tottenham Hotspur are one of a number of clubs chasing unsettled Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente

Picture: Action Images

Picture: Action Images

First published in Spurs

Spanish striker Fernando Llorente has put a number of Premier League clubs on alert by confirming he will leave Athletic Bibao next summer – for free.

Spurs, Liverpool, Chelsea and Manchester City are all thought to be chasing the highly-rated hitman while Arsenal and Manchester United have also shown an interest in the past.

The 27-year-old said: "I am going to leave on June 30. I want to develop as a player and try something new.

"It isn’t about money because the offer the club (Athletic) made was irresistible."

Champions League football is believed to be a minimum requirement for Llorente, providing an added incentive for the likes of Spurs, Liverpool and Arsenal to finish in the Premier League's top four.

It is thought however that clubs may try and steal a march on their rivals by making a low cash bid in January in the hope that Athletic would be tempted to accept.

The deadly striker is considered to be one of the hottest properties in Europe having scored 24 goals in 48 appearances last season for Bilbao.

Uncertainty over Llorente’s future however has meant the forward has only started twice this season, scoring one goal.

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