White Hart Lane club need to spend the big bucks to land star.
Espanyol striker Pablo Osvaldo can leave the club for £26million, according to his manager Mauricio Pochettino.
The 25-year-old has been on the radar of many top European clubs, including Tottenham Hotspur, Fulham, and Juventus.
Atletico Madrid, armed with £38million from Sergio Aguero’s deal to Manchester City, have already had a £17.3million bid rejected.
The former Fiorentina and Italy U21 international scored 13 goals for the La Liga side last season, and the club are unwilling to drop their asking price.
“If the player (Osvaldo) wants to go there is a buy-out clause of €30million (£26million) and the league starts in two weeks,” Pochettino said in Sport.
“The time has come to put the cards on the table. As far as I am concerned he is a player that is difficult to replace if he goes.
“It isn’t good to not have things clear at this stage.”
Spurs boss Harry Redknapp has made several enquiries into Osvaldo as he continues to search for a striker.
He has also been linked with Athletic Bilbao hit-man Fernando Llorente and FC Twente forward Bryan Ruiz.
But so far is hunt for more firepower has not got him anywhere as he has been priced out of all moves for Europe’s best strikers.