By Greg Stobart
Tottenham will open talks next week over a new contract worth £80,000-a-week for Luka Modric, Goal.com can reveal.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy is due to sit down with the Croatian playmaker's representatives to discuss a pay rise that would nearly double his current £45,000 weekly salary and make him the club's top earner.
Chelsea made repeated attempts to sign the wantaway midfielder over the summer but Levy stuck to his claim that Modric would not be sold “at any price” despite a whopping £40 million bid in the final days of the transfer window.
Modric, 26, angered people within the club by trying to engineer a move to Chelsea by giving interviews in which he described his “dream” of moving to Stamford Bridge and questioned Tottenham's ambition.
He further upset supporters by refusing to play against Manchester United in August as he tried to force a move to Chelsea, who were believed to be ready to offer him a £130,000 weekly salary.
Tottenham are wary of appearing to reward Modric for his actions over the summer but understand the Croatian deserves to be paid a salary that reflects his ability and importance to the team. The club's top earners are William Gallas and Rafael van der Vaart on around £75,000-a-week and Modric can expect to be offered a deal that makes him the highest paid player at White Hart Lane.
Tottenham sources have told Goal.com a new deal would "essentially be a pay rise" and the club are not looking to change any other terms of his contract.
His current contract runs until 2016 and Modric has claimed a “gentleman's agreement” was reached when he signed the deal last summer to allow him to move to a bigger club.
Spurs are adamant that no such agreement was struck and Levy is keen to build bridges with the star. The Spurs chief personally spoke to Modric three times during the summer to spell out that the midfielder would not be granted his wish of a switch to Stamford Bridge.
Modric claimed his head was not right when he tried to pull out of Tottenham's clash with Manchester City last month but has returned to his best form since the transfer window closed, scoring a stunning strike in last weekend's 4-0 victory over Liverpool.
Spurs manager Harry Redknapp believes Modric was badly advised during the summer and has urged Levy to offer a new deal as soon as possible.
“If he is worth £40 million then life tells you that you have to be paid accordingly,” Redknapp said earlier this week.
“You have to look after the boy and I am sure we will do that. Hopefully, his future is here.
“This is a big club, a good club, I am sure the chairman will sit down and talk to him. We have got to convince him that his future is here and make it right for the boy, which is only fair and I am sure he will.”