With Toby`s future still very much up in the air, it looks as though the club have been checking out some possible replacements just in case our no.4 departs in the summer.
The Mirror is reporting that Bayer Leverkusen`s Jonathan Tah could be a target for us, but he would likely cost about £35m because of the new contract he signed just at the end of last month.
We are believed to have scouted the centre back on a number of occasions so would he be a good fit for us if we do make a move for him?
On the face things, he does look like a very promising defender, in a similar vein to one Davinson Sanchez. At 22 years old, he is close in age to the Colombian and has some similar attributes as well.
The German has pace, strength, composure on the ball, and is good technically; all qualities that would hold him in good stead playing in the Premier League. He also has room for improvement, which is likely to be an attractive proposition for Poch who is superb at developing young talent.
In terms of Leverkusen`s stats in the Bundesliga this season, they have conceded 33 in 25 games, which isn`t bad but isn`t the best either, with seven other teams having better defensive records. Last season as well, the German side conceded 55, but the centre half did miss almost half of the season with injury, so we shouldn`t be too concerned about that.
He is clearly a player with tremendous promise, but for me personally, if he is going to be Alderweireld`s replacement, I would prefer somebody with slightly more experience. In Sanchez we already have potential for the future, and to ensure we have continued solidity, I would favour two experienced first choice centre backs.
Of course, Vertonghen is more than capable of playing alongside a younger talent as we have seen this season, but I always feel that more assured when he is partnered with Toby. If a breakthrough can be reached in contract talks with the Belgian then that would be fantastic, but if not, I would much prefer the club seek out an experienced international in his mid to late 20s who can come in and hit the ground running.
What is certain is that it will be hard to replicate the partnership that Jan and Toby have struck up over the years, but we have the perfect manager in place to make sure that if the duo are broken up, the transition will be as smooth as possible.