Damiao is on the brink of a move to Santos, Brazilian reports suggest. (Reuters)
Long-term Tottenham Hotspur target Leandro Damiao is edging closer to a move away from Internacional, but looks set to remain in his homeland with a move to Santos imminent.
The powerful striker was relentlessly linked with a move to White Hart Lane throughout the 2012/13 campaign and during the summer transfer window as Andre Villas-Boas sought to add the Brazil international to his squad.
Spurs were thought to have made at least one bid for Damiao until the club became frustrated with Internacional's demands and instead turned their attention to Roberto Soldado, who they signed for £26m.
Internacional president Luis Cesar Souto de Moura indicated last July that the striker would not be sold until after the World Cup next summer, prompting speculation that Spurs may return with another offer when the Brazilian outfit are willing to do business.
But Globo Esporte report that the 24-year-old striker will now move clubs in the early New Year to join rivals Santos for a fee as low as £2.5m plus an unnamed player moving in the other direction - despite the striker being valued in the excess of £20m just six months ago.
According to the report, Damiao has already agreed in principle to join Santos and will seal his move in the coming months following the conclusion of Brazil's 2013 Serie A campaign.
The striker, who first appeared on the radar of British clubs after his excellent performances for Brazil at the London 2012 Olympic Games, endured a rather lacklustre season amid increasing speculation regarding his future, striking just five goals compared to his tally of 18 in the previous season.
Tottenham failed with a deadline day bid of £13m for Damiao during last season's January transfer window and were understood to have failed with a follow up bid of £18m during the summer.
After the club were in desperate need of strikers this time last year, Andre Villas-Boas may be looking to add to his misfiring options this time around, particularly with Jermain Defoe's future at the club uncertain. The England international remains linked with a return to West Ham United in addition to a lucrative move to Toronto FC in the MLS.
Internacional may be on the verge of losing their prized striker in Damiao, but the club received a boost when Bruno Gomes, the 17-year-old striker who had long been thought to have a deal in place with Manchester United, announced through his Twitter account that he had agreed a deal to join the Porto Alegre club.
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