Franck Kessie is making a huge name for himself in Italy playing for Atalanta who find themselves in an incredible position in the league in 4th. As the Italians look to qualify for European football next season they will find it tough to keep hold of their box-to-box midfielder Kessie, who is in outstanding form for the Italian outfit. Here's five things you need to know about the man on everyone's lips who is bound to be a summer target for Premier League clubs... Whilst playing for...
"The Club I Dream of Playing For"
The Ivorian has been linked with pretty much every top club in Europe, with the Premier League showing the greatest interest. With reports circulating about Chelsea and Arsenal's interest, Kessie recently came out with something much more interesting.
"I like the Premier League and in particular Manchester United, the club I dream of playing for.
"Chelsea? That is also a big club, nobody would turn them down, but I dream of United.” He told TuttoMercatoWeb via EuroSport.
Staying in Italy?
Teammate Papu Gomez claimed earlier this month that the 20-year-old was set to stay in Italy by joining AS Roma. However, Kessie himself claims that he does not know of any such arrangement. In fact, he’s got his eyes on something much greater, the Premier League.
“I did not hear any rumours around Roma, as I was at the Africa Cup of Nations and so focused only on playing. " He told TuttoMercatoWeb via EuroSport.
There have been many comparisons between him and fellow Ivorian Yaya Toure, and this seems fair. The Atalanta player does not have the languid build of his compatriot, standing at 1.83m, but he is still a physical force to be reckoned with, possessing both pace and power.
He's very capable of keeping the ball at his feet and looking up for support to either move the ball up the pitch or to get out of a tight situation.
Kessie's role with Atalanta where he plays in the Serie A with, is seen as a box-to-box midfielder and is capable of being a defensive shield for his team or a threat inside the opponents half. The Youngster is a tremendous dribbler that likes to run with the ball holding off any opponent and shows great determination to get back and get forward when possible.
Flying High Atalanta
Atalanta see themselves in 4th going into this weekends game against Napoli as they look to keep on track with a surprising chance of qualifying for European football.
The Italians have been playing 3-4-2-1 and 3-4-1-2 this season, a formation that seems to have swept across Europe these last couple of years.
Atalanta have one of the best defensive records in Serie A, scoring 31 and conceding only 14 goals in the 19 games played using either one of the back three formations above.
He Will Go Far...
Whilst playing for Atalanta, Kessie is gaining valuable European footballing experience at such a young age, so he should be adaptable to playing for any top European club. He is integral to Atalanta's season so far as they look to push for a place in a major European competition next year.
If he can maintain his progression, work on his discipline and the technical side of his tackling he would be any team's staple player in the centre of their midfield. He has such raw talent and with the right coaching he can be moulded into a world class player and can be a key figure for any top club and for his country for many years to come.