Tottenham Hotspur are trying to prise Franck Kessie away from AC Milan…
According to La Repubblica (via Sport Witness), Spurs will attempt to sign the 24-year-old powerhouse by offering the Serie A outfit wantaway midfielder Tanguy Ndombele.
Earlier this week, reports emerged claiming the north Londoners had offered Kessie a long-term €8m-per-year (£6.85m-per-year) deal to join them upon the expiry of his current contract in 2022.
The Ivory Coast international has previously expressed his desire to remain at the San Siro, though he was far from convinced by their latest offer and as a result, Fabio Paratici and co are trying to sign him now, instead of next summer.
Ndombele’s wishes to depart N17 have been made no secret in recent weeks. The Athletic claim that his snub from the starting XI for their EFL Cup final clash with Manchester City kickstarted the change in his demeanour.
During the off-season, the Frenchman has requested an exit, believing he could secure a move to a Paris Saint-Germain or a Bayern Munich, which is why Nuno Santo is yet to include him since taking charge – he won’t select a player that doesn’t want to be there.
Offering him up in a move for Kessie, who is valued at £34m by CIES, could be quite a shrewd move with Ndombele’s wages in excess of £200k-per-week, and considering the Milan star is out of contract in a year’s time, the Italian giants could be forced into letting him go for a lot cheaper than they would’ve expected.
The 24-year-old has been an industrious presence in midfield for Milan, contributing at either end of the pitch to great effect.
As per WhoScored, he ended the 2020/21 campaign as their fourth highest-best player with an average rating of 7.15. He found the net a whopping 13 times from the engine room, a figure only bettered by the talismanic Zlatan Ibrahimovic (15).
The box-to-box beast also contributed 1.3 shots, 1.2 dribbles and 0.8 key passes per league outing, proving that he is efficient at bringing the ball forward and making that crucial link between the defence and the attack.
Meanwhile, an average of 1.5 aerial duels won, 1.4 tackles and 1.2 interceptions, via WhoScored, would suggest that Kessie is a solid presence and one that isn’t easily bypassed in midfield.
It’s no wonder his head coach Stefano Piolo dubbed him “a complete player” who gives us physicality, energy, quality, protects the defence and knits the moves going forward too” and is “invaluable” to the team.
Furthermore, ex-Milan boss Vincenzo Montella once hailed the Ivorian as an “extraordinary player” with “sublime intelligence.”
Evidently, those that have worked with him only have praise for the 24-year-old, so he’s clearly got something special about him if every manager that walks through the door in Milan is selecting him and subsequently praising him.
These are all attributes that we should be seeing from Ndombele in that box-to-box role alongside Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and whilst his technical ability is unrivalled, top-quality and consistent performances from a club-record £55m signing have been far and few between.
Kessie has scored more goals in one season than Ndombele has in two years in north London.
Paratici must look to axe Ndombele in favour of Kessie, especially as he’s going to be available for bargain price given his contractual situation.
Get it done, Spurs.