Tottenham Hotspur have emerged as the newest contenders for Manchester City striker Kelechi Iheanacho’s signature.
According to a report in The Sun, the 20-year-old forward has emerged as the subject of interest for Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino. Iheanacho, who until recently looked set for a move to Leicester City, is also said to be a target for Borussia Dortmund and AS Monaco.
The recently deposed Premier League champions Leicester City reportedly agreed to pay City’s £20 million valuation of the Nigerian international, but Spurs’ recent interest and the fact that Manchester City desire to acquire fullback Kyle Walker, may throw a spanner in the works.
Iheanacho, who has 4 seasons left on his current contract, signed for City’s Academy from the Taye Academy in Owerri, Nigeria in January 2014 after which he would represent City’s youth teams at various levels and have a short stint with Columbus Crew in the MLS.
He would go on to make his professional debut for the Citizens in August 2015. In 35 appearances across all competitions in the 2015/16 campaign, of which he started only 11, he would score 14 goals and register 5 assists, finishing as City’s third highest scorer during that season.
Iheanacho was expected to build on his stellar debut season in the 2016/17 campaign, but he failed to hold down a place in new manager Pep Guardiola’s starting XI, with the Spaniard preferring to play Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero ahead of the 20-year-old.
As a result, first team opportunities came few and far between and he could only manage 7 goals and 3 assists in 29 appearances, out of which he started only 8 games. So understandably, the Citizens are looking to offload him and for £20 million, Tottenham can easily afford him.
Spurs are in need of top quality reinforcements to ease the goalscoring burden on Harry Kane. Vincent Janssen failed to live up to expectations following a big money move from AZ and Iheanacho has proven more than capable of leading an attack in the past.
City have been heavily linked with a move for Tottenham Hotspur right-back Kyle Walker for a while now, but are reportedly unwilling to pay Spurs’ £50 million asking price for the player. However, Spurs’ recent interest in Iheanacho could prove to be beneficial to both parties.
While a direct player swap would be highly unlikely, Manchester City could possibly table a player plus cash offer for Walker, with Iheanacho going the other way. City wouldn’t be forced to pay £50 million and Tottenham would be getting a highly promising talent along with the cash.
After a underwhelming 2016/17 campaign, a move away from the Etihad might be the best step forward for Iheanacho and if reports are to be believed, he has no shortage of suitors but Mauricio Pochettino might just be the man to help get his career get back on track.