Tottenham Hotspur are yet to make a signing in the January transfer window but the door may have just opened to do so…
And whilst the Lilywhites are yet to submit an official offer, the USMNT midfielder is someone that has been on the club’s radar for quite some time.
A few months ago, football.london reporter Alasdair Gold couldn’t rule out a January move for the Juventus ace, whilst it’s thought that the Old Lady value him at around €30m (£26m) this month, per some reports in Italy.
Spurs boss Antonio Conte is pretty well-stocked in the midfield engine room, particularly since the emergence and breakthrough of Pape Matar Sarr, who has impressed in recent cameo performances.
However, McKennie is an absolute “rock” – in the words of his former manager Andrea Pirlo – and one that is capable of contributing at both ends of the pitch, with his powerful box-to-box nature reminiscent of the great Mousa Dembele, a player that the north London side have never truly replaced.
That versatility is something that both Gold, who also described him as an “engine” and another ex-boss in David Wagner have lauded him for, with the latter once claiming: “He’s an outstanding talent. In the No.6 or No.8 position he has the mentality, a real working mentality that you need.”
This season in the Serie A, McKennie is successful with 71% of his dribbles, whilst WhoScored list his ‘defensive contribution’ as one of his key – and strongest – attributes, two facets that undoubtedly draw more parallels with Spurs’ former midfield monster.
The Juventus midfielder also caught the eye on the biggest stage, performing admirably at the World Cup in Qatar.
His display against England was one of the standouts as the Independent’s Miguel Delaney suggested that Jordan Henderson was dominated by the American, whilst the Evening Standard’s Dan Kilpatrick claimed he’d be a “very useful player” for Spurs, based on that outing.
As such, with the box-to-box machine dreaming of a switch to Tottenham this month, sporting director Fabio Paratici can surely secure his former Juventus signing McKennie on a deal and in doing so, the Italian supremo could hand Spurs a new Dembele-like engine for years to come.