The Anzhi Makhachkala attacker underwent a medical with Tottenham on Wednesday, and looked on course to pen terms, before the Blues lodged a superior £31.6 million bidBy Greg Stobart
Tottenham fear missing out on Anzhi Makhachkala attacker Willian after Chelsea lodged a late €37 million (£31.6m) bid for the Brazilian on Thursday.
The 25-year-old underwent a medical at Spurs on Wednesday and looked on course to become the north Londoners' fifth summer signing - and third club-record deal of the transfer window.
Tottenham remain hopeful a deal can be reached with Willian after agreeing a deal worth £30m with the Russian outfit, but Chelsea's superior offer trumps that agreed by chairman Daniel Levy and, technical director, Franco Baldini.
This latest twist signals the second change of focus from the midfielder, and his representatives, with Liverpool previously confident of securing Willian's signature after lodging a bid of €30m (£25.6m) on Monday.
Meanwhile, Gareth Bale's move to Liga giants Real Madrid is thought to be imminent, with Spurs pinpointing Roma winger Erik Lamela as an ideal replacement.
The Premier League outfit have tabled a five-year deal worth £65,000-a-week after indicating they will meet Roma's £29.9m asking price for the Argentina international.
Real are hopeful of agreeing a world record fee worth in the region of £86m for Bale but Levy is still holding out for £100m despite the 24-year-old’s desire to move to the Santiago Bernabeu.