Tottenham are back in the mix to sign Barcelona midfielder Franck Kessie after failing to land him on a free transfer last summer, according to reports.
The Premier League club were keen to bring the Ivorian to north London when his AC Milan contract expired.
However, he made the choice to join Barcelona on a four-year deal.
Now earning £220,000 per week with arguably the biggest club in world football, Kessie made what he believed to be the best possible move despite plenty of interest from elsewhere.
It has been difficult for him in Catalonia, however.
The 25-year-old has only made five starts across all competitions this season and is currently sidelined with a thigh injury.
He is believed to be eager to prove his worth to Barcelona manager Xavi in order to become a consistent starter.
Despite Kessie’s desire to become a Blaugrana regular, his future is becoming a talking point within the media.
Tottenham were once again linked with the former Milan midfielder earlier this week, with Antonio Conte reportedly keeping tabs on his situation.
Both reports also believe Aston Villa and Fulham are keen on signing Kessie, though it is hard to imagine him joining either of those two clubs. No disrespect intended.
‘Several clubs across Europe’ are said to be targeting Kessie, with Inter Milan and Napoli also asking Barcelona about his availability.
In what will be seen as a boost for the player and a setback for Tottenham and co; Barca have ‘no intention’ of letting the Ivory Coast international leave in January, the report adds.
Kessie is competing for a starting berth under Xavi alongside Gavi, Pedri, Sergio Busquets, and Frenkie de Jong.
Aston Villa’s reported interest is notable. While they probably don’t stand much of a chance of signing Kessie, it does make sense to see their name in the mix given their ambition in the transfer market in recent windows.
They signed Diego Carlos from Sevilla last summer and made an audacious bid to sign Arsenal’s Emile Smith Rowe in 2021.
There is a lot of interest in the 23-year-old, with his relationship with Atletico boss Diego Simeone supposedly deteriorating.
Spanish outlet Marca believe Villa are in a solid position to land Felix after opening negotiations with the player’s representatives.
However, Birmingham Live journalist Ashley Preece is not as optimistic for the Midlands club.
Preece understands that Villa are keeping tabs on the situation after being made aware of Felix’s desire to leave, though he insists it ‘‘feels totally unrealistic’.
Arsenal and Manchester United are also reportedly interested in signing the Portugal international – who shone for his nation in their 6-1 World Cup last-16 win over Switzerland on Tuesday.
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The article Tottenham joined in race by Villa, Fulham after ‘enquiring’ about out-of-favour Barcelona star appeared first on Football365.com.