Tottenham could sign Antonio Conte’s new N’Golo Kante in Juventus star Weston McKennie.
Reports in recent months had claimed that the Bianconeri would be willing to let the USA international go in the summer, with “strong interest” from both Spurs and fellow Premier League club Aston Villa.
Italian publication Calciomercato have now claimed that the Lilywhites, led by transfer chief Fabio Paratici, have reignited their interest in the midfielder, with Juventus still willing to part ways with him.
The last time Conte was in the Premier League, he had a successful stint at Spurs’ London rivals Chelsea, leading them to the Premier League title with his favoured back-three formation.
Part of that team’s success came from the incredible midfield work that Kante got through in the midfield engine room, with the Blues ace playing more games under Conte than any other manager in his professional career (89).
The title-winning 2016/17 campaign saw him average a whopping 3.6 tackles and 2.4 interceptions per game in the Premier League, and Conte will be looking to find his own Kante now at Spurs. In McKennie, he could find exactly that.
USA legend Alexi Lalas has already drawn comparisons between McKennie and Kante, saying: “He could be a new Gattuso for Pirlo, who played with the original and knows how important it was for the balance of that AC Milan (team).
“McKennie has something of Gattuso but also of (N’Golo) Kante and (Arturo) Vidal. As they say here: beauty and the beast both serve to win. And McKennie, as well as a conqueror of balls, also has excellent skills in the construction of the game and with his head he is always dangerous.”
Hailed as a “leader” by David Wagner, the American’s performances in the Bundesliga for Schalke earned him a high-profile move to Juventus, where his former boss Andrea Pirlo was a big fan of the 23-year-old.
Calling him a “rock“, the Italy icon added: “He’s young and can improve a lot. In my opinion, he’s a midfielder who can play as a No 8 in a three in midfield, right or left. He gets in the box and scores goals but he’s also very good at winning the ball back.
“His role is in a three in midfield as one of the two players on either side of the regista. Last year we played in a different system, so he had to adapt.”
As per WhoScored, McKennie has an impressive career average of 1.2 tackles and 1.2 interceptions per game, while also managing just under one shot and key pass per match – a real indication of how he could be used not only as a midfield destroyer, but as a more box-to-box threat too.